A warning was recently issued following an accident involving a car ramming into a group of people praying roadside
20 January 2019| Last updated on 19 January 2020
Image credit: Dubai Police
Seeing cars and buses pulled to the side of the road is a common sight in Dubai.
More often than not, the vehicles have stopped to allow their passengers to pray on the side of the road.
But Dubai Police are now warning motorists to refrain from doing so, as roadside parking is a dangerous offence and can result in deadly accidents - especially on Dubai's huge highways.
Drivers who do so shall face a fine of AED 500, a senior official of Dubai Police has confirmed.
Brigadier Saif Muhair Al Mazroui, director of Traffic Department at Dubai Police told Gulf News, "It is not acceptable for motorists to park on the side of the road for praying especially on highways."
The warning came just one day after a motorist rammed into a crowd of people offering Maghrib prayer on the side of Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Road.
The incident involved a driver who, driving at high speeds, ran over a group of workers who were performing prayers on the roadside after their tyre had burst. Two people were killed, six suffered injuries and three are reportedly in a serious condition.
Brigadier Al Mazroui also shared how just 15 minutes beforehand, another four buses had also been parked roadside nearby the accident site.
Repeat offences will be punished
If a driver of the car or bus is caught repeating the offence, their vehicle will be impounded by Dubai Police.
“We have noted this behaviour and have warned drivers against stopping on the road side.
“Despite warnings, some drivers are repeating the same offence. In some case companies that owned the buses have been contacted to inform them about the offending drivers", added Brigadier Al Mazroui.
To help increase awareness of the dangers of roadside parking on Dubai's roads, the Dubai Police aim to launch an awareness campaign for motorists.
Why do people prayer on the road in Dubai?
For residents living in Dubai, buses filled with workers stopped at the side of the road is not an uncommon sight. More often than not, they've stopped to pray.
In Islam, there is 5 prayers a day - Fajr in the early morning, Dhuhur after midday, Asr at mid-afternoon, Maghrib occurs just after sunset, and Isha generally an hour later in the night. Maghrib is the prayer that normally lands right in the middle of rush-hour traffic in Dubai - so it is common to see buses of workers pulled to the side of the road to allow them to offer their prayer.
But drivers must be reminded...
The side of the road is not a proper place to offer prayers, and lives of worshippers and drivers can be endangered.