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Posted On: 6 June 2008 12:42 pm
Updated On: 12 November 2020 02:08 pm

Ashghal enforces penalties on sign damages

Khalifa Al Haroon
Khalifa Al Haroon
Your friendly neighborhood Qatari
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Start a discussion Alarmed at the way traffic signboards, especially the overhead variety, are being damaged by trucks and other heavy vehicles, the Public Works Authority (Ashghal) has decided some preventive action is overdue. Judicial powers are also being sought. Signboards, sourced locally and from other GCC states, cost between QR70,000 to QR140,000 and damage incurred to them puts a dent in the country's exchequer, according to Ali Al Naimi, Head of Traffic Signboards at Ashghal's Roads Affairs Department. He told Ashghal, the Authority's in-house magazine: "As the signboards give clear direction to drivers, they need to be maintained well. Our section works for the installation and maintenance of the signboards, implemented through separate contracts for installation and maintenance." A lack of awareness and civic sense are major problems, he said, leading to signboards being unnecessarily damaged, especially on the part of drivers of trucks and other heavy equipment. "This causes heavy damage to the boards erected on single columns or double columns, which costs huge amounts to the state." With cases having to be transferred to the Department of Traffic and Patrol, Al Naimi rued his department not having any judicial powers. "We have requested for this for speedy implementation of rules against violations." Al Naimi said Ashghal has put up warning signs on height limits for vehicles and details of the height of the signboards. "For example, we have done this on Dukhan Road and Salwa Road, so trucks beyond the height of 5.5 metres must be rerouted through sub-streets." Al Naimi's section also deals with naming of streets and varios zones once sanctioned by the Emiri Diwan. "Currently we have two important projects, one for maintenance of signboards with an estimated budget of QR2.25m. The second project is a contract for naming and numbering of streets, including installation of new boards wherever necessary, a project costing QR2.5m," said the official.