Heavy vehicles in UAE given 4 months’ grace period to comply with 65-tonne load limit
14 Sept 2023
Smart gates to scan loads to be installed on national roads as penalties to come into effect from February 1, 2024, with individual emirates also allowed flexibility to set their own limits under the 65t ceiling
Heavy vehicle owners and transport companies in the UAE have been given a four-month grace period to comply with the new regulations for weight limitations on national roads to come into effect next month.
A new federal law announced on September 4, which is to take effect from October 1, caps the maximum permissible weight of heavy vehicles that can ply on national roads at 65 tonnes. The UAE federal government said the step was taken to ensure the safety of road users and to protect the integrity of the UAE’s road infrastructure.
While the new federal law will come into effect from October 1, heavy vehicle owners and companies have been given four months to adapt to the new law’s provisions before penalties start to be imposed from February 1 next year.
Suhail bin Mohammed Al Mazrouei, Minister of Energy and Infrastructure, told a press conference yesterday that the law aims to improve the UAE’s infrastructure, transport and logistics sectors, as well as boost the economy and support government efforts to make the UAE’s infrastructure among the most advanced in the world and the safest.
The law will cover more than 150,000 heavy vehicles in the UAE, including those that cross the country’s borders to neighbouring GCC states. Only vehicles owned by security agencies, police, the military and civil defence are exempt from it.
According to figures available at the Ministry of Energy and Infrastructure (MoEI) 28% trucks plying on the UAE’s roads at the moment carry loads exceeding 65 tonnes. The MoEI will use the grace period until February to raise awareness of the new law and penalties for non-compliance among transporters.
Al Mazrouei explained that in the time until the penalties come into force, the government will also issue a decision specifying the permissible maximum total and axle weights, charts of dimensions, a list of violations and administrative penalties.
In the four months until the penalties come into force, smart gates will be installed on national roads, which will be equipped with 3D laser scanners, electronic sensors and high-resolution monitoring cameras with proven accuracy of 98%).
Each emirate has also been given some flexibility to put in place its own restrictions based on its specific road conditions and what local authorities decide, so long as the limit is lower than the national cap of 65 tonnes. This step has already been implemented on Abu Dhabi’s Tahnoun bin Mohammed Road (Dubai - Al Ain E66), where the maximum permissible weight has been set at 45 tonnes by the Integrated Transport Centre (ITC) Abu Dhabi.