Monday, March 01, 2010

Not all was what we needed

I said yesterday that the rain was just what we needed.

Not all the results of it were what we needed though.

It certainly cleared the dust from the air and washed the place down, but it also had some tragic effects.

At Global Village a woman was killed and a man badly injured by a falling sign at the Indian Pavilion. And in Sharjah three men were electrocuted, one who touched a metal pole on the side of a flooded road and two others by coming into contact with water charged with electricity.

There was plenty of chaos on the roads, especially in and to Sharjah, which seems to have been the worst hit emirate. A colleague of Mrs Seabee left work in Dubai at 6pm and didn't arrive home in Sharjah until five hours later.

Dubai police say there were 170 road accidents during the first hours of the heavy rains that lashed the country on Saturday night. There were 21 classified as serious, 16 moderate and 133 minor accidents. The Command & Control room apparently received 3,415 phone calls, presumably most not about traffic problems.

Talking of the weather, parts of western Europe have also been hit by wild storms. At least thirteen people are reported dead, most from drowning.

We get these problems in Oz too. A couple of times falling branches have brought a power line down outside our house, leaving the live cable lying across the road. People act quickly, whoever spots it first sets up a warning of some sort and alerts all the neighbours. State Emergency Service crews are quick on the scene and fortunately there hasn't been a tragedy.

We had a tsunami alert there for the east coast as a result of the Chile earthquake, as did the whole Pacific rim. Beaches were cleared but the surge came a little later than predicted and met the outgoing tide. That took the sting out of the incoming water so the tsunami fizzled out.

Sea levels did rise and there was a small tsunami wave, and now the oceanographers are coming under attack for overstating the danger. I have to agree with the comment from the Hawaii Tsunami Warning Centre though:

" It's a key point to remember that we cannot under-warn. Failure to warn is not an option for us. We cannot have a situation that we thought was no problem and then it's devastating."

Looking out of my window now it's sunny and calm with the leaves not moving on the trees. However, the weather bureau says we can expect unsettled weather with gusty winds and heavy rain for the next couple of days.

Reports I've referred to:

Results of UAE weather.
Tsunami alert.


Anonymous said...

Oh no... Doesn't look very nice... We are coming on holiday to Dubai on Friday... Hope that the weather gets better by then...

Seabee said...

Anon@11.43, I think you'll be OK. The bad weather is for the next two or three days they say so hopefully it will calm down by the time you arrive. I was out just now, about noon, and although the wind has picked up a bit the air was reasonably clear, it's sunny, not humid, maybe about 30C.