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Abu Dhabi, UAEWednesday 12 December 2018

Floating house structure sinks near Burj Al Arab

Developer says temporary structure built for New Year celebrations sunk due to bad weather

A temporary house built near the Burj al Arab for the New Year celebrations has sunk in bad weather.
A temporary house built near the Burj al Arab for the New Year celebrations has sunk in bad weather.

A floating house sunk in bad weather near the Burj Al Arab. Police said there were no injuries and the structure was vacant.

The Kleindienst Group described it as a temporary platform that looked like a house created for the New Year’s Eve celebrations.

A team of divers from the Dubai Police checked the space for occupants on Wednesday when the incident occurred but found it empty, according to Lt Col Ahmed Burqibah of the search and rescue squad.

“Our divers were sent in case any rescue was needed. This is part of our safety procedure but there was nobody in the house,” Lt Col Burqibah said.

“It went down under the water and we were called. It was in bad weather conditions.”

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The developer, the Kleindienst Group had showcased homes called the Floating Seahorses last year.

“The platform provided for Sea Dubai’s New Year’s Eve celebrations off the coast of the Burj Al Arab hotel was created specifically for that event to provide a stage for lights and sound equipment for the New Year’s eve event,” a spokesman said.

“Due to adverse and unexpectedly rough seas, the platform suffered a failure and sank. No one was on board at the time of the incident nor did the sinking pose any environmental risks.”

The developer is building a cluster of six islands as part of the Heart of Europe project. The group said the platform that sank was not among the floating houses developed for the Heart of Europe project, but built specifically for the New Year event.

“The platform was securely anchored, however freak 6 to 8 feet high waves close to shore caused the platform to fail,” the spokesman said.

“None of the Floating Seahorses being developed by the Kleindienst Group will ever sit in open waters, but will be located in The World archipelago protected by breakwaters, where the waves will not exceed 50 cm high.”