Flash flood alert after down­pour

Prin­ci­pals au­tho­rised to sus­pend classes based on sit­u­a­tion

Gulf News - - Front Page - BY FAISAL MASUDI Satff Re­porter

Rough weather struck huge swathes of the UAE yes­ter­day, with heavy rains caus­ing flash floods in wadis and send­ing res­i­dents in cities run­ning for cover.

Strong winds also swept up rough seas and weather of­fi­cials sent out alerts urg­ing res­i­dents to take cau­tion in af­fected ar­eas. The Na­tional Cen­tre for Me­te­o­rol­ogy sent out a flash flood warn­ing which will re­main in ef­fect till 11.30am to­day. Mean­while, the Min­istry

of Ed­u­ca­tion, on its Twit­ter page, said that prin­ci­pals are au­tho­rised to de­cide whether to sus­pend classes to­day de­pend­ing on the con­di­tion of roads lead­ing to schools.

Res­i­dents were caught off-guard as thun­der­storms struck huge swathes of the UAE yes­ter­day, caus­ing danger­ous flash floods in wadis, in­un­dat­ing city roads and send­ing pedes­tri­ans scram­bling for cover.

Of­fi­cials in var­i­ous govern-ment de­part­ments is­sued weather warn­ings, telling peo­ple to keep away from the flooded ar­eas, avoid rough seas and drive safely.

Heavy thun­der­storms and hail were re­ported in Ras Al Khaimah, with res­i­dents quick to take to the so­cial me­dia to post pic­tures.

Ras Al Khaimah res­i­dent Mo­ham­mad Sayyan said it had been rain­ing since he left home for work at 7am yes­ter­day.

“It has been pour­ing al­most the whole day, it only slowed down for a short while. Around 2.30pm we saw a very heavy down­pour. The sky was to­tally cov­ered by clouds, with thun­der roar­ing,” said Sayyan, from India.

“Some roads were flooded, re­duc­ing traf­fic to a crawl. It’s been a stormy day.”

Dubai res­i­dent Sha­keeb Ah­mad said his day out with fam­ily at the Global Vil­lage was cut short by the down­pour.

“The Global Vil­lage is an open area, so when the rains picked up strength, we had to take shel­ter in the ven­dors’ stalls in­stead of shop­ping from them. It was the last day of the Global Vil­lage and our trip there came to an abrupt, sur­pris­ing end be­cause of the turn in weather,” said Ah­mad.

Mean­while, au­thor­i­ties is­sued a flash flood warn­ing alert from 9.30am yes­ter­day till 11.30am to­day. Heavy rain

was re­ported in Wadi Sha­hah in Ras Al Khaimah, Al Ad­lah in Abu Dhabi, Al Dhaid in Sharjah and Falaj Al Mualla in Umm Al Quwain.

Mod­er­ate rain was also re­ported at Al Wath­bah in Abu Dhabi and Hatta in Dubai.

Stormy weather con­di­tions have af­fected the UAE since April 9, ac­cord­ing to the Na­tional Cen­tre for Me­te­o­rol­ogy (NCM). A spokesper­son for the cen­tre told Gulf News: “The con­di­tions have in­ten­si­fied to­day [April 13], re­sult­ing in rain­fall in most ar­eas of the coun­try.”

The pub­lic has been urged to stay away from places af­fected by flood­ing, es­pe­cially in the wadi ar­eas. The high­est rain­fall recorded un­til 4pm yes­ter­day was 87.1mm. Some res­i­dents of Al Digdaga area in Ras Al Khaimah have re­ported see­ing hail.

Ac­cord­ing to NCM, cloudy con­di­tions and rain­fall are ex­pected to con­tinue un­til to­day.

Clint Eg­bert/Gulf News

The UAE has been ex­pe­ri­enc­ing stormy weather since April 9.

Ahmed Ramzan/Gulf News

Light­ning lights up the night sky in Sharjah late last evening as rains struck most of the UAE.

Virendra Sak­lani/Gulf News

Peo­ple caught in the rain in Sharjah yes­ter­day.

Clint Eg­bert/Gulf News

A pedes­trian tries to beat the rain in Dubai.

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