I found this very entertaining article at a community bloggers site called : UAE Community blog. It has scores of issues related to Dubai and living here. I am an optimist so although the below pointers may be true to a certain extent, in all honesty, almost all of the Gulf is like that, if not worse !!!
Dubai has been my home for the past two decades and I have been driving almost past one decade. And I am so pleased to say that inspite of driving in all sorts of areas from Sharjah industrial area to Deria Nasr square to Jebal Ali – – I’ve just had one small accident while waiting for my right at Al Barsha round about that too by the desperately impatient driver behind me !!!!!!!! What are the odds to that ?????
Infact if you came from India and Pakistan or such places, you’d think, driving here was much more organized than there although the speed factor is the only reason why fatality in an accident is so high. Kudus to Dubai RTA for all the fantastic bridges, flyovers, high ways and metros that are “work in progress” We are with you. I liked these comments becoz true as they are, there is something very comical about how the author ” James Hamilton” has written them. Hang in there James, a decade or two and we’ll get there !!
Quite frankly, there are scores of expats who have landed here in the past 5-7 years having heard of Dubai being a safe, welcoming and prosperous place to live and grow in … they are the ones who have not experienced life in the desert without an airconditioner and would become delirious if they had to walk without their fourwheel drive even if they had to cross the trade center roundabout !! Complaining is their favorite passtime. Its like a hobby for them. Every lunch break they have to have a subject to brood about !!
Every young country grows gradually, and they all have teething problems, Dubai has grown drastically and the problems here, are the impatient and arrogant expat visitors who really know that they are going to stay here for not more than a year or two and would love to whine about just about anything under the sky ; who expect to transform an Arab Islamic country into a New york or Paris !!
Agreed, Driving here is not safe just like any other country … the accidents and casualties may be more than most countries, but when you have stayed in a third world country, driving here is relatively less chaotic.
Following are the rules from the site : UAE community Blog.
1. If your road map is more than a few weeks old, throw it out and get a new one.
2. If you are in Rashidiya and your map is one day old, then it is already obsolete.
3. Forget the traffic rules you learned elsewhere. Dubai has it’s own version of traffic rules, which can be summarized as “Hold on and pray!”
4. If it is your priority to cross, forget it and wait.
5. There is no such thing as a dangerous high-speed chase in Dubai . Everyone drives like that.
6. When you plan to get a new car, ask first about its acceleration from 80 to 160 Km/h (recommended: 3 seconds). Very important if you frequently use the Emirates Road
7. All directions start with Sheikh Zayed Road , which has no beginning and no end.
8. The morning rush hour is from 5:00 AM to 1:00 PM, The evening rush hour is from 1:00 PM to 10:00 PM .
9. Thursday’s rush hour starts Wednesday morning.
10. If you slow down at a yellow light, you will be rear-ended and then given a ticket by the Dubai Police.
11. If you are the first one at the intersection, when the light turns green ignore the car honking behind you and count to five to avoid crashing into one of the cars running the red light in cross-traffic.
12. Construction on all main roads is a way of life and a permanent form of entertainment. (Sorry for the inconvenience)
13. All unfamiliar sights are explained by the phrase, “Oh, we must be in Sharjah!”
14. Car horns are actually toys for big boys.
15. Anyone in a Land Cruiser, Tuned Patrol, jeep or Mercedes with tinted windows has the right of way. Period!
16. If you are driving a Corolla, Sunny, or another small Japanese car, stay on the far right lane. No comment!
17. Most roads mysteriously change names as you cross intersections.
18. To ask directions, you must have good knowledge of Hindi/ Malayalam
19. A trip across town will take a minimum of four hours, although Sheikh Zayed Road has an unposted minimum speed of 150 Km/h.
20. It is sobering to realize that local Arabs are taught how to drive by Malyalyee.
21. 18 wheeler trucks are one of the fastest vehicles in Dubai ; they can do 120 Km/h on Hatta-Oman Road when fully loaded.
22. The minimum acceptable speed on the Emirates Road is 160 km/h. Anything less is considered downright sissy.
23. Al Khail Road is Dubai’s daily version of NASCAR.
24. Dubai Autodrome has a new extension: The Emirates Road.
25. WELCOME TO THE UAE!