Tuesday, February 19, 2008

End of the road for old vehicles

End of the road for old vehiclesBy Joy Sengupta (Our staff reporter)KHALEEJ TIMES 19 February 2008

DUBAI — If you have been driving the same car for many years, it is high time you got rid of it lest you are ordered to dump it. The Dubai Municipality, in coordination with the Roads and Transport Authority (RTA), is working on a mechanism to fix the roadworthiness of different vehicles according to the years of use. The move comes after the preliminary report of a study conducted by the Dubai Municipality revealed that 6 to 12 per cent of the vehicles registered in Dubai were harmful to the environment as they exceeded the permissible levels of emissions.

“It is an important option before us. We would be providing the RTA with all the figures related to pollution and gas emissions caused by different vehicles. The municipality has done a study on the emissions by both heavy and light vehicles. Our officials visited several locations in Dubai and readings were taken from the vehicles using remote-sensing technology,” said Redha Hasan Salman, Head of Environment Protection and Safety Section at the municipality.

“This technology allows us to work without disrupting traffic movements. We don’t have to stop any vehicle and readings are generated automatically. We would organise the presentation of the findings on March 1 so that a decision could be taken on fixing the roadworthiness of vehicles on the basis of year of use. Both the departments are working together to ensure that Dubai remains smoke- and pollution-free,” the official added.

Earlier, RTA sources had also stated that both the departments were conducting a detailed survey on all vehicles registered in Dubai to find out the number of old vehicles and measure the rate of pollution caused by various brands of vehicles.

The senior RTA officials have already said that they were trying for an alternative to petrol and diesel in an effort to reduce and curb the pollution levels.

Only recently, three abras were fitted with CNG engines and trial runs are continuing.

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