x Abu Dhabi, UAEFriday 19 January 2018

Thunderstorms batter the UAE

Torrential rain and high winds sweep across the emirates. In Abu Dhabi, one person dies and 32 are injured in four separate accidents on the morning roads.

DUBAI // Thunderstorms battered the UAE early this morning with torrential rain and high winds continuing until lunchtime. In Abu Dhabi, one person died and 32 were injured in four separate accidents on the morning roads. Water pooled in the capital's roads and parking lots and kept school buses running behind schedule. Residents in Dubai woke at 2am to the sound of thunder and flashes of lightening but by lunchtime, the rains subsided and the slow moving traffic began to move again. Sharjah was worst hit again. Motorists, residents and workers faced chaos in Sharjah as roads turned into rivers and car parks resembled lakes. For the second time in just two days officials diverted traffic from Emirates Road at the National Paints roundabout because it was impassable. Water levels rose above the wheels of cars in some spots of Sharjah, while residents had no other choice other than wade through the flooded streets. Ahmed Mohammed, a company manager for al Marwan from Syria, coped by pulling his tan suit to his knees and donning flip flops. "In Syria when it rains the water goes into a ditch you don't ever see it again. In Sharjah, when it rains, it comes into your house, your business and everything. It's a big problem," said the 25-year-old. newsdesk@thenational.ae