x Abu Dhabi, UAESunday 23 July 2017

Plan to cut speed limit in Abu Dhabi on hold

Plans to cut the buffer zone from the emirate's roadways are still in the works and will most likely not apply to highways.

Plans to remove the 20kph buffer zone from Abu Dhabi's roads are still under consideration.
Plans to remove the 20kph buffer zone from Abu Dhabi's roads are still under consideration.

ABU DHABI // Plans to reduce the maximum speed limit are still under consideration and not expected to be introduced soon.

Traffic police this week said that the scheme to do away with buffer zones, or the speed at which vehicles could travel over the speed limit before drivers receive a fine, was still in the planning phases.

"It was just an idea and it is still under consideration," said Col Hamad Al Balushi, director of traffic for Abu Dhabi's external regions.

"We are studying this. As for implementation on motorways, it's still not clear. It's being considered as well but isn't likely to happen soon."

Col Al Balushi said the buffer zone, typically 20kph above the posted speed limit, would probably be removed in only high-risk areas on internal city roads.

"The original idea was to implement it only near schools, residential areas, hospitals and malls," he said.

Reports that the project would begin at the start of next year are not accurate, the police said.

Eliminating the buffer zone is part of a larger plan to cut road deaths, and the department aims to have no deaths by 2030.

"The way things are now, 60kph means 80kph and 80kph means 100kph," Col Al Balushi said. "In the areas where the buffer speed would be removed, 60kph will mean 60kph."

jthomas@thenational.ae