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Guide for Road Signs to Drive Safely in Dubai

Following road signs not only ensures your safety but safety of other drivers, pedestrians and bystanders as well. The Dubai traffic law has strategically designed a series of road signs to provide proper guidance to drivers and pedestrians while traveling around Dubai. Here’s a detailed guide for road signs in Dubai

Dubai traffic signs – All you need to know 

Roads signs in Dubai are categorized into three broad types with different sub-classifications. These signs serve a different purpose of indication. To help you better understand each category and its classifications we have prepared a detailed guide below. 

Road Signs For Safety
Regulatory Road Signs Dubai Warning Signs Guide Signs
Control Signs Advance Warning Signs Trailblazing Guide Signs
Mandatory Signs Hazard Marker Signs Advance Guide Signs
Prohibitory Signs Exit Direction Signs
Parking Control Signs Diagrammatic Warning Signs Other Traffic Signs
Freeway Control Signs

Regulatory road signs Dubai 

These road signs are the ones that indicate specific traffic laws for different roads and highways that must be followed at all times. In instances where people are found to violate such traffic laws, they are subject to heavy fines or may be apprehended under the legal terms. To help guide you through the different classifications of regulatory roads sings follow the instructions stated below: 

Control signs

Signs that indicate basic road instructions are referred to as control signs. These include stop, give way, you must give way to pedestrians, no entry, and you must go this way are referred to as control signs. These signs are mostly commonly found at intersections and inner roads. Whether you are driving your own vehicle or the one you have hired from a luxury car rental in Dubai, being aware of these basic signs is essential. 

Mandatory signs

These traffic signs guide the drivers through a particular course of action. For example, the signs that come under this classification include; 

  • Speed limit
  • Ahead only
  • Keep left or keep right
  • Turn right
  • Roundabout
  • Tram only 
  • Pass either side of the road

Prohibitory signs

The signs that inform the drivers about a particular action to avoid while driving on the roads are referred to as prohibitory signs. Prohibitory signs include the following: 

  • No left turn
  • Lorries prohibited 
  • No pedestrians
  • Do not use your horn here
  • No overtaking signs
  • Priority to oncoming traffic 
  • No U turn 
  • Maximum speed limit
  • Permitted height limit
  • Qualification plate

Therefore, these are the basic prohibitory road signs you will find on highways, inner-roads, and private road sections of the city. The violation of these traffic laws will result in fines and black points on your driving license.  

Parking control signs

These signs as the name suggests are used to inform the drivers if they are allowed to park or not in a certain location. Parking fines are imposed on drivers provided that these laws are not followed promptly. The control signs are further divided into subcategories. Following is a detailed list of parking control signs: 

  • Parking zone: Parking meter on right side, parking is limited to the time mentioned.
  • Handicapped parking: Area of handicapped drivers only
  • No stopping: Driver’s must not stop or park in areas indicated by the arrows
  • No parking: Parkings that have been reserved for taxis and public buses
  • Goods vehicle: Parking for commercial vehicles as per time slots mentioned for unloading and loading activities
  • No waiting: Waiting is prohibited in areas as indicated by the arrows 

Freeway control signs

The freeway control signs are simply road signs that indicate the beginning and end of freeways. Hence the two signs that come under it are; Freeway begins and freeway ends.

Warning signs

When it comes to driving in Dubai, paying attention to warning signs is as important as other road sign categories. From construction ahead warnings to upcoming intersections, and more, the number of warning signs stated by the governance of the UAE is plenty. Let’s take a look at each of these warning signs and their sub-classifications: 

Advance warning signs

These warning signs are placed in strategic areas, informing the drivers in advance about the upcoming actions they should be prepared for. There are several different advance warning signs in Dubai. To help you better understand these signs, we have structured it in the following way: 

    • Intersection related signs: T-intersection ahead, intersection ahead, side road ahead and staggered junction ahead
    • Merge related signs: Traffic merging from the left and junction ahead merging with other traffic.
    • Traffic: Traffic signal ahead, two way traffic, stop sign ahead and two-way traffic crosses one-way ahead.
    • Curve roads: Curved road to the right, curved to road to the left and curves or bends ahead.
  • Narrow roads: Road narrows ahead on the right, road narrows ahead on the left, and road narrows ahead on both sides.
  • Close ahead: Left lane closed ahead, right lane closed ahead, no through road ahead and 2 right lanes closed ahead.  
  • Steep hill: Steep hill ahead upwards and steep hill ahead downwards.
  • Road condition: Loose chippings ahead, slippery road ahead, and edge way soft warning.
  • Human warnings: Pedestrian crossing ahead, children area, and road workers ahead.
  • Rail signs: Tram or railway crossing ahead, tram or railway crossing to the right or crossing to the left.
  • Road humps: Speed hump ahead and uneven roads ahead.
  • Aircraft related: Low flying aircraft area ahead (do not be alarmed or distracted)
  • Animal warning: Animal area (Beware)
  • Turn signs: U turn ahead, roundabout ahead
  • Other signs: Other dangers ahead, opening bridge, quayside or river ahead, risk of falling, high voltage, tunnel ahead, bicycle crossing, give way ahead and maximum headroom permitted. 

Therefore, this is an elaborate breakdown of the various types of advance signs present in Dubai.

Hazard marker signs

There are 7 different types of hazard signs present in the roads of Dubai. These hazard signs indicate various aspects for drivers to be aware of. The 7 hazard signs are; Hazard plate, hazard marker, single chevron right, multiple chevron left, T-junction chevron, single tram or railway crossing over road, and two or tram or railway crossing over road.

Diagrammatic warning signs

These signs are designed to provide clear instructions to drivers with the help of large and specific diagrams. The 10 different diagrammatic warning signs are as follows:

  • Right lane closure ahead
  • Additional lane added
  • Five range merging to four ahead
  • Land use is limited or controlled (trucks not permitted on the left)
  • Lane use control directional restriction 
  • Beginning and end of median 
  • Joining lanes 
  • Sharp curves lanes ahead to left or to right
  • Bus or tram route in bi-directions and single loop

Guide signs

Last but not least, guide signs are the last form of road signs automotive traveler

s should know about Dubai. Route emblems, trailblazing indications and directional information are all part of guide signs. The following classifications will give you a clear picture into what road signs are, and how they are helpful to you. 

Trailblazing guide signs (Route finding)

The trailblazing guide also known as route finding signs help travelers from other Emirates to navigate around the city. Some of the guide signs under this classification are as follows: 

  • Dubai routes including the Dubai emblem 
  • Emirates routes including the Emirate route emblem 
  • City Center Central Business District
  • Dubai International Airport (DIA) 
  • Freeways
  • Tourist Destination Description 
  • Directions to specific landmarks

Advance guide signs

These signs are placed in advance for travelers to find out which direction they will need to take to reach their destination. Advance guide signs are massive hoardings in green placed on highways indicating the direction to different regions across the city. 

Exit direction signs

As the name suggests, these signs are the ones that indicate exit direction. They are also placed in advance to help prepare drivers to make their exit safely. With multiple exits across the main stretches of Dubai, we recommend drivers to carefully pay attention to exit numbers. The types of exit direction signs present include, two lane exit with two lande drop and two exit numbers. Two lane exit with one lane dropped and two exit route numbers.  

Other traffic signs 

The other traffic signs that are more generally found in the city of Dubai are mentioned below: 

  • No turning for lorries
  • Road clear
  • Priority for vehicles from opposite direction
  • Parking area
  • Hospital area
  • Countdown markers
  • Supplementary information guide signs
  • Diplomat parking only
  • Diversion ahead
  • Lane ahead open and lane ahead closed
  • Reduce speed
  • Salik 
  • Variable message sign board

Drive safe. Follow the Dubai traffic signs

Now, with all the vast set of traffic signs present across the city of Dubai, it is your responsibility to abide by these rules. Traffic laws are placed not only to avoid chaos and confusion but to ensure the safety of the public. These Dubai street signs and highway road signs are put in place to ensure the smooth flow of traffic and reduce the occurrence of accidents. As travelers or residents of the city, we must appreciate the infrastructure that we have been provided and follow the signs provided.  

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