Balcony ban in Dubai

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Following suit after the recent crackdown in Sharjah and Abu Dhabi, now Dubai is regulating the air-drying of clothes in balconies and the display of dish antennas.

Hanging clothes, installing dish antennas, or placing junk in balconies and those ignoring these warnings could all face penalties as high as Dh1,500, according to a Dubai Municipality official.

No one is allowed to hang clothes or install dish antennas in the balconies as per the administration order number 3, issued in 1999, said Eng Omar Abdul Rahman, Head of Building Inspection Section, Dubai Municipality, toldEmirates 24|7.

But we havent faced this problem here. People have good culture and understand their responsibilities towards the society. Even building owners are taking action by asking tenants not to dry their clothes outside.

However, DM has yet not taken action against errant tenants. So we havent taken any action. If we get any complaint from residents, we will take action. In the first instance, we will give them warning but if they continue to ignore the rule then we will fine them.

Abdul Rahman said that the fines could range from Dh500 to Dh1500 depending on size of the balcony.

Just recently, Sharjah authorities announced that they hadfined 3753 residentssince January for hanging the clothes and satellite dishes out in their balconies. This balcony ban in Sharjah was introduced way back in 2000 but implementation in the strictest manner has been started only this year with full-fledged fining.

The ban is not only followed in Sharjah and Abu Dhabi but also in Ajman, which has enacted a similar ban. These law-breaking offenders will have to pay a fine of AED250 within the week or face it being doubled to AED500.

Apparently, this is all part of a huge campaign on behalf of the municipality to improve the image of Sharjah and the officers have not only been advertising this on the radio, TV and in newspapers but have also been handing out fliers in four different languages (Hindi, English, Arabic and Farsi).

Inspections in Sharjah are now being carried out on a regular basis and fines are being handed out to the law-breakers on a large scale.

Traditional clothesline – green

Electric or gas dryers in place of the traditional clothesline is the choice of method to dry clothes in the west, and restrictions against the clothesline method has infact convinced westerners that a clothes dryer is far convenient than pinning clothes in the sun.

These dryers cost quite a lot, besides the energy consumed. According to the California Energy Commission, dryers use so much energy that if all Californians used clotheslines, one nuclear power plant could be shut down.

Air-drying of clothes has long been considered as unpleasant and damaging to a city’s image. But in this need to ‘improve’ a city’s image, authorities are forgetting that a country that enjoys the benefits of a sunny weather all through the year, could only so much so try to reap the same. Maybe implementation of this ‘improvisation’ drive in a better, and feasible manner, with a localized approach would work wonders.

A ban against dish antennas can be implemented with efficiency, but stopping people from drying their clothes is definitely not going to be easily accepted.

Sources: Emirates 24|7, kippreport, surfcityvoice

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