|14 March, 2020

Drones, robots to help deliver licensing services in Dubai

Drivers licensing services will be digitised to make them more accessible

Image used for illustrative purpose. A UPS drone makes a Flight Forward medical delivery on WakeMed Health & Hospitals' main campus in Raleigh, North Carolina, U.S. in an undated photo. UPS/Handout via REUTERS.

Image used for illustrative purpose. A UPS drone makes a Flight Forward medical delivery on WakeMed Health & Hospitals' main campus in Raleigh, North Carolina, U.S. in an undated photo. UPS/Handout via REUTERS.

Drones and robots could soon be used in delivering vehicle and drivers licensing services in Dubai, the Roads and Transport Authority (RTA) announced on Saturday.

This is among a package of improvements of drivers licensing and training as well as vehicle testing services that the authority endorsed recently.

Initiatives approved include using drones and robots in carrying out site inspections; launching a centralised drivers' training system; improving commercial licensing services; digitising drivers licensing; and introducing smart medical testing of drivers.

Mattar Mohammed Al Tayer, Director-General and Chairman of the Board of Executive Directors of the RTA, said digitising licensing services will help clients process all their transactions on their own "without human intervention".

Technology to detect violations

Al Tayer reviewed a host of monitoring and enforcement initiatives that include the use of drones in monitoring trucks avoiding inspection; and capturing images of plates of trailers to identify protruding load, load distribution and body safety. Initiatives include using robots to stop vehicles and direct them to checkpoints, which protects the security and safety of both policemen and inspectors.

The RTA also reviewed an initiative to automate 65 activities relating to commercial licensing, which will improve customers' journey towards issuing commercial transport permits. It reduces the number of visits and time needed for transactions. A platform built on blockchain technology will bring together Dubai entities like Dubai Municipality, Department of Economic Development, and the Directorate General of Civil Defence that are part of the commercial licensing process. The initiative slashes visits from nine to two, papers from 13 to three and duration from 15 to five working days.

Digitising drivers licensing

Drivers licensing services will be digitised to make them more accessible, the RTA said.

This includes enhancing "governance, security and credibility of customer's details, and improving drivers licensing services across smart and paperless channels".

The initiative contributes to the processing of transactions without visiting customer service centres. It will help reduce carbon footprint by cutting carbon dioxide equivalent emissions from 18,000 tonnes to zero. It also supports Dubai's paperless transactions strategy, raises digitisation from 56 per cent to 90 per cent, and increases the number of service delivery channels from three to six.

Smart medical testing

Among the initiatives approved on Saturday is a smart medical testing for commercial drivers that will be rolled out in the second half of this year. It uses artificial intelligence in testing applicants for renewal of driving licences and issues the document instantly. The initiative saves the service duration from two days to 15 minutes and the service is available 24/7.

E-training drivers

Al Tayer also examined the centralised e-training system for managing, automating and the governance of drivers' training processes and services. It controls operations at driving centres and provides detailed training materials to instructors and trainees.

The system contributes to the digitisation of all transactions and services, saves details of more than two million training hours per annum, and more than 100,000 trainees per annum. It saves the printing of 20 million papers and 2,500 plastic cards annually.

sahim@khaleejtimes.com

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