The Unofficial Ugandan Highway Code

Posted: 16 January 2015

Blog 5 from Rob Dunn

Miscellaneous Musings  

After living in a relatively ordered British culture for 21 years, Kampala can be a very, very funny place to live. Here's my current top 4 of the most hilarious moments Uganda has to offer from 2014

  1. Shoppers roping freshly bought fish to their front car grill to avoid odours in their car.
  2. A motorcyclist riding with a bunk-bed strapped onto his seat behind him
  3. Overtly Christian Shops names – Highlights include 'God's Pool of Grace Liquor Store' 'Redeemed by the Blood Hair Salon' and (my favourite) 'Abraham's Family Planning Clinic' (See Genesis 15:1-5)
  4. A man roller-blading, whilst holding onto a rope, pulled by a taxi

Brilliant stuff.

The Unofficial Ugandan Highway Code

Now, here 14 helpful tips for navigating the Ugandan Road Network.

  1. Maintenance – Not a concept. Wait until it's knackered.
  2. When it's knackered – Be sure to keep all passengers in the vehicle when trying to fix it. Refuel it, re-air the tyres and jack it up. It'll be fine.
  3. Pre-departure checks – None. Even if the engine doesn't start, get a bloke to push you down the hill. It'll probably start somewhere on the way.
  4. General rules – Try to stay vaguely on the left of the road
  5. Seatbelts – Seriously?
  6. Pulling away – NEITHER check mirrors nor indicate. Stick your right arm out of the window and pull away. This gesture gives you right of way in all situations.
  7. Indicators – Avoid indicating at junctions, roundabouts or when overtaking. However, be sure to arbitrarily indicate when passing parked cars.
  8. Head Lights – If they're working, put them on. If not, don't worry.
  9. Signage – Try to do the complete opposite. Ensure you DO NOT give way at any Give Way sign. This will confuse others drivers and may cause an accident.
  10. Junctions – Approach slowly. This will be inevitable however as traffic will be at a standstill. On reaching the junction, do whatever takes your fancy.
  11. Roundabouts – Irrespective of your intended route, take the left lane, especially if you're going right. This will allow you to pass quicker.
  12. Dual Carriageways – Goodness knows.
  13. Traffic Jams – You will meet these frequently. To avoid, use the hard shoulder, or if occupied, use the pavement to pass with ease. If completely blocked, press your hand onto the horn and hold.
  14. Zebra Crossings – Do not pay much attention to these. If you are to find a person upon one, try to swerve around them to save time.
  15. Traffic Lights – Try to sneak though without causing a crash.
  16. Parking – Just stop.