Cyclone Shaheen bears down on Oman flooding valleys

By: News Desk      Published: 09:35 AM, 3 Oct, 2021
cyclone shaheen
High waves break on the seaside promenade in the Omani capital Muscat.–AFP

The much-feared tropical Cyclone Shaheed struck Oman’s coastline on Sunday morning bringing with it stormy winds and heavy rains inundating many valleys in the Gulf state.

Muscat Governorate saw heavy rains and the valleys of Edai and Khuwair saw flash floods. More valleys are expected to follow," National Committee for Emergency Management (NCEM) said in a statement. 

Meanwhile, NCEM said: "The tunnel leading to Burj Al Sahwa roundabout towards the Wilayat of Seeb has closed due to water gathering."

Two-day holiday has been announced with NCEM urging people to avoid using the roads along the coastal highway extending from the Governorate of Muscat to the Governorate of North Al Batinah. 

More than 50 people have been rescued by Civil Defence and Ambulance Authority (CDAA) as a result of the direct impact of the tropical cyclone Shaheen.

"Rescue teams responded to nine reports about people being stranded in their vehicles in the Governorate of Muscat as a result of heavy rains, and they managed to rescue 25 people, all of whom are in good health," the Authority said in a statement. 

Meanwhile, the Authority said: "Rescue teams in the Governorate of Muscat dealt with 13 reports of people being stranded in homes in the Wilayat of Muscat and the Wilayat of Muttrah, due to the high water level as a result of the tropical condition Shaheen. The teams managed to rescue 30 people who are in good health."

"Currently, heavy rains of varying intensity are falling on the Governorate of Muscat and parts of the Governorates of South Al Batinah and Al Dakhiliyah, with the approach of tropical cyclone Shaheen towards the coasts of the North Al Batinah Governorate," Oman Meteorology said in a statement.

"The water level has risen in the Al Zahia area in the Wilayat of Muttrah where citizens and residents were directed to climb to the top of their homes," Oman News Agency (ONA) said.

Two valleys saw flash floods in Muscat Governorate due to the tropical cyclone Shaheen.

"Rescue teams of the Civil Defence and Ambulance Authority managed to rescue seven people due to rainwater entering their house in the Wilayat of Muttrah. They are in good health," ONA said in a statement.

ONA said in another statement that traffic is cut off on Sultan Qaboos Road: Ministries District and opposite Sultan Qaboos Grand Mosque Road. Road users should take caution and use alternative paths.

"The National Committee for Emergency Management announces a break in the transmission line (1600) feeding Seeb tanks from Barka and the fluctuation of the feeding stations in Barka. Seeb tanks will be fed from the Al Ghubra pumping station," ONA confirmed.

The committee assured the beneficiaries that the quantities of produced water are sufficient to cover the current consumption, calling for rationalisation in water consumption. 

The Oman News Agency reported that Hurricane Shaheen had caused heavy rain in the Muscat Governorate, while nine people in the Oman Civil Defense Muscat Governorate were stranded in their vehicles and twenty-five people responded. 

Earlier, the Civil Aviation Authority of Oman issued Warning No.3 Tropical cyclone Shaheen In the Arabian Sea, the news agency Oman posted the news on Twitter.

According to a statement from the National Center for Early Warning, the satellite images and analysis show that the tropical cyclone Shaheen is currently centered at 24.2 degrees north latitude and 59.3 degrees east longitude, and continues to move toward the coast.

The epicenter of the tropical cyclone was about 130 km/h from the Muscat governorate, and the wind speed around the epicenter was estimated at 64 knots (116 km/h).

The sea is raging

This extended from the southern Al Sharqia governorate to the Musantam governorate, and also ensured that the sea on the Sultanate coast would be very rough. The wave height is estimated to be 8-12 meters, with seawater likely to extend to land in low-lying areas, and it will be moderate and hard waves on other shores of the Sultanate (2-3 meters).

Further, the Commission urged all to be very careful and cautious not to risk crossing the valleys, to stay away from low places and not to go to sea during this period.

It is noteworthy that the O’Brien News Center announced on Saturday that it had begun evacuating citizens from the Capoura and Saham coastal areas to shelter centers.