Dubai swamped by heavy rains

(MENAFN) Dubai, the glittering metropolis synonymous with luxury and modernity, found itself grappling with an unprecedented natural calamity as torrential rains inundated the typically arid landscape of the United Arab Emirates (UAE). The deluge, which struck with remarkable force on Monday and Tuesday, brought life in the bustling city to a grinding halt, marking a stark departure from its usual desert climate.

The United Arab Emirates government, stunned by the ferocity of the storm, revealed that the country experienced its heaviest rainfall in recorded history, surpassing records dating back 75 years. Dubai, in particular, bore the brunt of nature's fury, receiving an astonishing 142mm (over 5.5 inches) of precipitation within a mere 12-hour period. To put this into perspective, this amount of rainfall equates to 18 months' worth according to statistical averages for the region.

The impact of the downpour was exacerbated by the city's inadequate infrastructure to handle such extreme weather events. With Dubai's roads ill-prepared for heavy rainfall due to its typically dry climate, the streets quickly transformed into treacherous waterways. Major highways became impassable as large lakes formed, trapping motorists in their vehicles and compelling many to abandon them altogether in the face of rising waters.

Tragically, the storm claimed at least one life, underscoring the severity of the situation. Reports from local authorities in the northern Ras Al-Khaimah emirate confirmed the death of a 70-year-old man whose car was swept away by the swift currents of floodwaters.

The havoc wreaked by the storm extended beyond roadways, infiltrating even the city's iconic landmarks. Both the Dubai Mall and the Mall of the Emirates, renowned shopping destinations, succumbed to the deluge, their interiors transformed into murky pools. Additionally, reports emerged of at least one underground station succumbing to flooding, further exacerbating the chaos.

The disruption caused by the torrential rains reverberated throughout the region's transportation network, with Dubai International Airport, a crucial hub for global travel, bearing the brunt of the impact. Multiple flights were delayed or diverted as a significant section of the airport's canopy and runway succumbed to the deluge, presenting a logistical nightmare for travelers and airport authorities alike.

As Dubai grapples with the aftermath of this rare natural disaster, questions loom regarding the city's resilience in the face of extreme weather events and the urgent need for infrastructure improvements to mitigate future risks. The unexpected deluge serves as a sobering reminder of nature's unpredictability and the imperative for proactive measures to safeguard against its formidable forces.



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