Thursday, August 25, 2005

69 new ways of getting caught in the act

The police are installing sixty nine new cameras all over Dubai to make the city "safer for pedestrians" among other reasons.
Better than nothing, however, judging by the lightning speeds employed by blacked-out Land Cruisers as they fly down the Sheikh Zayed Runway Road I don't think an increase in the number of cameras is going to improve road safety. If anything, there will be more cases of drivers slowing down to a civilised speed as a camera approaches, and then rocketing back to 160 kilometers an hour once past it. That, or more tales of daring females exposing their breasts as the speed camera snaps them. Perhaps getting your picture taken by Ahlan! is no longer the latest fad?

Radical measures are needed. Traffic fines proportional to one's income and the seizure of the offending vehicles for a month would be a start. Until then, eighteen people a month will continue to lose their lives on Dubai roads for no reason at all.

Oh, and personally speaking, I doubt these new cameras will be as effective as the 69 position in delivering a satisfactory result.


Blogger strangeloops said...

Good news about the cameras.

One thing I've been wondering about is the laws for pedestrians. According to the local newspapers, police always seems to blame the driver when a pedestrian gets hit. In Canada, as far as I know, you need to use a crosswalk or intersection to cross the street, or else you're on your own.

I'm not a fast driver, but if somebody runs out across the road as I enter a curve, I'll probably nail them. Am I responsible?

Sharjah's industrial areas don't have any crosswalks or intersections, so that's an interesting case in itself.

1:05 pm GTS  
Blogger samuraisam said...

i noticed this about a year back.

from what i've heard a system of camera's is being installed UAE wide at all key intersections, and an underground computer lab is being set up with 200 computers for dubai police to monitor everything.

spooky stuff. 1984 here we come.

PS: if you want to see one of the cameras, go on the road next to the police college and look up at the lights, you'll see a box ontop of the pedestrian lights. they dont have camera's as of yet, but it'll be interesting when they do.

7:16 pm GTS  
Blogger desertblog said...

Samuraisam, are these new cameras the ordinary speed ones that activate when you go over the limit, or are they 24 hour CCTV cameras? I thought they were the former not the latter. In the UK we already have CCTV cameras and soon, the ones in Central London will have microphones attached to them. Sadly the UK is becoming very close to being a complete police state.
I will keep an eye out for this camera on my way to work, thanks for that.

8:04 pm GTS  
Blogger desertblog said...

strangeloops, good question. I'm not sure how to answer that, I think a lot of it will depend on the nationality of the driver and that of the pedestrian, political correctness was never one of Dubai's stronger points. It might also depend on the mood of the policeman on your case as to who is responsible, so it is a difficult question to answer.

8:07 pm GTS  
Blogger samuraisam said...

they are CCTV cameras.

difficult to explain where they are located, but they are pointing from the side where pedestrians cross to the other side, so only a few cars can be seen.

there is already an elaborate CCTV system in the on an area in dubai and you are greeted with some blurry/some good live views of dubai that are updated every 30 seconds. a friend of mine used this and made a page with all of hte webcam pics on one page, which was cool, i'll try and get a hold of hte link again.

12:50 am GTS  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

strangeloops, even if the driver is accused, it doesnt change much. The punishment for vehicular manslaughter (ie: runnign someone over and killing them) is blood money paid by the insurance company, and a jail term of varying lengths depending on nationality of the victim and the driver.

3 friends passsed away thanks to some unlicensed red-light-runner in a corvette and dishdasha. The 4th friend was jailed for being insane, while the dishdash boys spent 1 hr in jail till family came to release them. Welcome to Dubai justice.

9:33 pm GTS  

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