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Legality of amendments to Traffic Laws in the UAE

Published on : 07 Feb 2024

UAE's Traffic Law Amendments

The United Arab Emirates (UAE) has recently undertaken a significant revision of its traffic laws, marking a major step towards enhancing road safety. These amendments, which became effective on July 6, 2023, are part of a broader initiative to combat reckless driving and ensure the safety of lives and property. This is particularly relevant in Dubai, a bustling metropolis with a complex traffic system. The new rules introduce stringent penalties for various driving offenses, with a special emphasis on penalties and vehicle impoundment procedures. Authorities have made efforts to publicize these changes extensively, ensuring that motorists are well-informed and compliant. This article aims to provide a comprehensive overview of these pivotal changes in the UAE's traffic laws, focusing particularly on their implications in Dubai.

Dubai's Revised Traffic Regulations: Decree No. 30 of 2023

The heart of these changes lies in Decree No. 30 of 2023, which redefines the approach towards traffic violations in Dubai. The decree sets out the conditions under which vehicles can be impounded and delineates the penalties associated with various traffic infractions.

Criteria for Vehicle Impoundment

Key to understanding the new laws is the clarification of the circumstances under which vehicles can be impounded. Articles 2 and 3 of the decree detail these scenarios, while Articles 4 and 5 outline the penalties for a range of violations.

Overview of New Fines and Penalties

The UAE's updated traffic laws introduce severe penalties for a range of violations, aiming to significantly enhance road safety.

The recent amendments to the UAE's traffic laws introduce stringent penalties for various violations, each designed to address specific risks and enhance road safety. Running a red light, a hazardous offense endangering both drivers and pedestrians, now incurs a fine of AED 3,000, accompanied by 12 black points on the driver's license and a potential vehicle impoundment lasting 30 days.

To combat reckless driving, a leading cause of accidents, the new regulations impose a substantial fine of AED 50,000. This hefty penalty aims to deter motorists from engaging in behaviors that put lives at risk on the road.

Ensuring responsible adult supervision, allowing someone under 18 to drive results in a significant fine of AED 50,000. This underscores the gravity of permitting underage individuals to operate vehicles, emphasizing the need for strict adherence to age regulations.

The misuse of vehicle plates, whether through forgery or obscuration, is now met with a substantial fine of AED 50,000. This measure emphasizes the importance of properly registered and identifiable vehicles, reinforcing road safety and aiding law enforcement efforts.

Unauthorized modifications to vehicles, compromising safety and comfort, incur a penalty of AED 10,000. This discourages vehicle alterations that could potentially pose risks on the road.

Riding recreational motorcycles on paved roads, a practice associated with increased risks, now attracts a penalty of AED 50,000. This measure aims to mitigate potential hazards posed not only to the rider but also to other road users.

Evading the police, a serious offense compromising public safety and law enforcement efforts, results in an impound release fee of AED 10,000. This penalty underscores the gravity of attempting to evade law enforcement personnel.

Driving without a proper number plate, hindering vehicle identification and law enforcement's ability to regulate traffic, incurs a fine of AED 10,000. This highlights the significance of proper vehicle identification for effective traffic management.

Participating in illegal road races, endangering participants and bystanders, leads to an impound release fee of AED 10,000. This penalty is designed to discourage engaging in activities that pose serious risks on public roads.

Excessive window tinting, potentially compromising visibility for both the driver and law enforcement officers, is met with a fine of AED 10,000. This measure ensures that window tints adhere to permissible limits for safe driving conditions.

Intentionally hitting a police vehicle, a grave threat to law enforcement personnel and their ability to ensure public safety, results in a substantial fine of AED 50,000. This penalty emphasizes the severity of actions that compromise the safety and effectiveness of law enforcement efforts on the road.

Impoundment Rules and Additional Measures

The updated laws emphasize the impoundment of vehicles for severe violations. To retrieve impounded vehicles, owners must comply with specific conditions, including fine payment and rectification of the violation, alongside any additional requirements set by the Dubai Police.

Handling Repeat Offenders and Deportation

The law is particularly stringent on repeat offenders. If a vehicle is impounded again within a year for the same violation, both the impoundment period and the release amount are doubled, with a maximum limit of Dh200,000. Additionally, non-citizen drivers of heavy vehicles caught in serious offenses like running red lights are subject to administrative deportation.

Awareness Campaign and Impact

A key goal of these legislative changes is to cultivate a sense of responsibility and awareness among UAE drivers. The Dubai Police has launched an extensive awareness campaign to educate the public on the new regulations and the importance of safe driving. This initiative emphasizes the critical nature of adhering to traffic laws for the safety of all road users.


Being informed about traffic regulations and prioritizing safety is essential for every road user. These amendments to the UAE's traffic laws represent a significant step towards fostering a safer and more responsible driving environment, ultimately contributing to the safety and well-being of the community.