Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Car pooling madness

The optimal usage of every motor vehicle's carrying capacity is an obvious way of reducing overall traffic levels. With congestion on the city streets and highways of the Emirates it is not surprising that the topic of car pooling has been raised anew.

Hitherto, for some inexplicable reason, it has seemingly been illegal for Ali, the owner of a Toyota Corolla, to collect his colleagues Samir, Ehab and Rafi from their flats nearby and drive them to their common destination, their place of work. Don't ask me why, but I get the impression that this basic illegality is seriously aggravated if Ali should in a moment of weakness accept from his friends a contribution to the cost of petrol involved.

This the obvious answer for any authority desirous of taking a stand against congestion would be to do an about face and positively encourage the sharing of cars, both on a regular or ad hoc basis. The authority making this bold move would, nevertheless, introduce new rigour with regard to vehicle and driver insurance and the road worthiness of the automobiles on the roads, whether shared or not.

But such an authority we don't have. Instead we have the RTA. And their take on car pooling is described in this post on the UAE Community Blog.

One wonders whether to laugh or cry! If, as is possible, they have no idea what they're doing, then should they not, perhaps, look and see how other countries handle the issue of ride sharing and simply adopt whatever can be deemed best practice in this area. I'd bet that best practice is also least bureaucracy!

1 comment:

nzm said...

Farcical, isn't it?

From a country which was a dream in which to do business a few years ago, the UAE has now turned into a bureaucratic nightmare.

We're having an awful time trying to change the Director of our company set up in the DIC. It's been going on for 4 months now, and every time we think that all is ok, along comes another ridiculous request for some other needless bit of paperwork.

Trouble is, they seem to change their minds on what they actually require. From the first list of required paperwork that we received after requesting the change, the number has been increased by about 5 other documents...and counting.