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TIN news:    Stiff penalties await motorists who disobey new rules governing traffic on roads shared with Dubai Tram, the Roads and Transport Authority (RTA) has warned.
New signs and pavement markings have been put up all along the 10.6 kilometre tram network ahead of its November 11 opening and RTA has urged motorists as well as pedestrians to learn and understand the signs before they use roads shared with Dubai Tram.
The trams pass through at least 30 junctions, crossings and intersections starting from Dubai Police Academy in Al Sufouh to Dubai Marina and Jumeirah Beach Residence.
The authorities are taking all necessary precautions to ensure the safety of all road users.
The Al Sufouh tramway is expected to be fully operational by November 2014. The second phase of testing will begin in April, while the final phase will be in June.The Al Sufouh tramway is expected to be fully operational by November 2014. The second phase of testing will begin …"Various signs and markings that are being applied on the road as part of the Dubai Tram project have not been used in the past on Dubai roads and we want people to understand these signs and markings when they are using roads covered by trams. People should be extra careful when they drive or walk on roads and pavements that share space with trams," said Hussain Al Banna, Director of Traffic at RTA's Traffic and Roads Agency.
Most of the new signs relate to restrictions about road use for motorists as well as pedestrians when they come across a moving tram or a track.
"Regulatory signs are traffic signs that display traffic rules and regulations on public roadways and indicate what road users must do and what they must not do. Failure to obey a regulatory sign, unless directed otherwise by a traffic officer, constitutes an offence and is punishable by law," added Al Banna, who is heading an awareness campaign about the new traffic signs.
RTA has announced huge fines for various offences related to disruption of tram movement, ranging from Dh2,000 to Dh30,000.
Among the biggest offences is jumping the red light at a tram intersection and causing a fatal accident. This offence could lead to a fine in the range of Dh10,000 to Dh30,000 along with suspension of the offender's driving licence for up to one year.
Jumping the red light and causing an accident resulting in injuries will lead to fines of Dh5,000 to Dh15,000. Driving licence of the motorist who caused the accident will be revoked for 30 days to six months.
Jumping the red light at the tramway intersection without causing any major damage can incur fines between Dh2,000 and Dh5,000, while the driving licence of the motorist will be revoked for a period of 30 days to three months.
Apart from road signs, there are several regulatory pavement markings that are unique to areas where the tram operates.
"Regulatory pavement markings inform road users of actions they shall or shall not take. The display of a regulatory marking on its own is sufficient to establish a regulatory condition and does not require a supportive regulatory sign to give effect to the regulatory message of the marking. Disregard for a regulatory pavement marking constitutes an offence and is punishable by law," Al Banna said.
Some examples of regulatory markings include zigzag lines where stopping a vehicle or changing lanes is prohibited at all times.
Other pavement markings include yellow and white zebra crossings on tram tracks that are not controlled by traffic lights, and raised speed humps.

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