DUBAI // Almost 6,000 people in two months have registered in an online programme that legalises carpooling, the Roads and Transport Authority said. The authority's Sharekni.ae was launched on July 21 to ease Dubai's traffic, tackle illegal taxis and help cut exhaust emissions. Peyman Younes, a spokesman for the RTA, said: "So far, 5,800 individuals have registered on the site, which is a good number for a new concept like this. Of those, 110 are actually now sharing lifts through the scheme. The others are waiting for other users with matching journey criteria to come up. The site enables commuters to register their details without charge. They can then use a search engine to identify drivers and other passengers in their area who will be taking the same route. A permit is then issued, allowing them to share lifts with up to three other people. "Carpooling is a very new concept especially for this region with many nationalities, so it needs time to be accepted. In other, developed countries you have people living in the same neighbourhood who know each other well, whereas here that is not generally the case, which makes it more difficult. "I think it will become a lot more popular with time, and we're very happy with the response." Mr Younes said the highest number of registrations had come from Filipinos, followed by Pakistanis and Indians, with a handful of UAE nationals signing up so far. Most participants were using the scheme for relatively short journeys, including commuting between Dubai and Sharjah. Dubai has the highest rate of car ownership of any city in the world, and the RTA sees carpooling as part of the overall long-term solution to the emirate's traffic woes. "There's no single magic solution, which is why we're tackling it through various transport initiatives that include carpooling," said Mr Younes. "Every little bit helps. We are co-ordinating with other emirates and the Ministry of Interior for journeys which involve travelling from Dubai to other emirates." He warned that RTA inspectors were constantly on the lookout for motorists who were carpooling without licences - an offence which carries a fine. In the past, several motorists have complained they were unfairly fined up to Dh5,000 (US$1,362) for running illegal taxi services when they gave colleagues lifts to work. Sharekni.ae enables users to select their fellow carpoolers according to their sex, nationality, age, profession and location. Passengers who change jobs and location can change their carpool rides by updating their online profiles and searching for other available seats. email@example.com
- Al Ain takes measures to increase road safety
- Interactive: Al Ain crash sites
- Long-awaited UAE child car seat law ‘may be in place next year’
- Deadline for Abu Dhabi jet-ski registration extended
- Dubai agencies reveal plans for marine stations for Dubai canal project
- Building raised kerbs will help reduce crashes at junctions, Abu Dhabi police engineer says
- Most Viewed
- Most Commented
- Drunk British tourist ran about naked at Shoreline on Palm Jumeirah
- Heavy rain and thunderstorms strike across the UAE
- Father discovered flatmate’s sexual assault on daughter from her phone call to friend
- Man who touched woman ‘was trying to be nice’, Abu Dhabi court hears
- American curriculum in the UAE will not help getting into US universities
- Most Viewed
- Most Commented
- Federal Traffic Council approves proposal to lower UAE driving age
- Men ripped off woman’s clothes in bathroom, Abu Dhabi court hears
- Ties no longer mandatory for Dubai cabbies amid safety concerns
- Live blog: With the emergency workers at Rashid Hospital Trauma Centre
- Dubai launches mobile app to faciliate parking and payment
In pictures: Leaders attend UAE and Egypt’s joint military exercise Zayed 1
Leaders from the UAE, Saudi Arabia and Egypt attend a joint military exercise, “Zayed 1” between the UAE and Egyptian armed forces in the Western Region.
In pictures: Best business images of the week to March 12
In pictures: This week's list of business images includes refugee carpet makers in Peshawar; coal energy in Germany and protests at IBM's factory in China.
Porsche, McLaren, and LaFerrari hybrids are best
The Porsche 918 Spyder, McLaren P1 and the LaFerrari set the pace eco-style.
UAE cricket generation’s gap to end, but lesson in history stays for amateurs
The feat of 1996 heroes will be repeated after an 18-year wait but some of the stars tell Paul Radley that nothing has changed for the amateur cricketers who work six days a week.
In pictures: 10 things not to miss at Design Days Dubai
Top ten things not to miss at Design Days Dubai.
Best photography from around the world today
The National View's photo editors pick the best images of the day from around the world.