Dubai: chaos at world’s second-busiest airport as UAE and Oman reel from deadly storms


YEREVAN, APRIL 18, ARTSAKHPRESS. Heavy rain has continued to batter Gulf states, causing deadly flash floods and disrupting flights at Dubai International Airport which warned of “very challenging conditions” and advised some passengers not to turn up due to areas being inundated by water, BBC reports.

On Wednesday, about 300 flights to and from Dubai International Airport – a major hub for connecting flights to every continent – were cancelled, according to Flight Aware data, and hundreds more were delayed.

The airport, which last year served more than 80 million passengers, second only to Atlanta in the United States, warned recovery would take “some time”, the report adds.

In UAE a man died when his car was caught in flash floods. Authorities warned that more thunderstorms, heavy rain and strong winds were forecast, with many low-lying areas still under water.

The UAE’s National Emergency Crisis Management Authority issued a warning before the storm, telling people to stay at home. The government also told its employees to work from home and private schools were also advised to carry out remote learning.

The United Arab Emirates, Oman’s northern neighbour, experienced on April 16 its largest rainfall event since records began 75 years ago.

In Oman, more than 1,400 people have been evacuated to shelters. Schools and government offices have been closed as a precaution. According to BBC, rescuers found the body of a girl in Saham, bringing the death toll in the country to 19 since Sunday. On April 14, 10 schoolchildren aged between 10 and 15 and an adult were killed when their bus was swamped by floodwater in Sharqiya province. Three other children and the driver were rescued. 

The heavy rain also hit Saudi Arabia and Bahrain where videos showed cars stranded in flooded roads.

Many factors contribute to flooding, but a warming atmosphere caused by climate change makes extreme rainfall more likely.

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