Thursday, 17 Oct 2019 | 18 Safar 1441
Tropical storm Hikaa dumps rain in Al Wusta; flooding in Duqm

Tropical storm Hikaa dumps rain in Al Wusta; flooding in Duqm

Soon following the landfall, Oman’s Directorate General of Meteorology downgraded it to ‘tropical storm’ with surface wind speed about the centre ranging among 45 knots and 55 knots.

According to Jason Nicholls, lead international forecaster at AccuWeather, the centre of really serious cyclonic storm Hikaa pushed ashore close to Duqm.

“Heavy rain will continue across Al Wusta governorate into early Wednesday. System will rapidly dissipate over the southern Arabian Peninsula in the next 24 hours,” he mentioned.

On Tuesday morning, heavy rain was reported from Masirah Island in South Sharqiyah, although in the course of the evening widespread flooding was reported in the wilayat of Duqm in Al Wusta governorate following torrential rains tore by means of the wilayat with gale force winds.

Emergency centre

The Ministry of Health (MoH) has activated its emergency operations centre to make sure smooth functioning of well being solutions in Al Wusta and South Sharqiyah governorates.

Tourists cautioned

In a statement issued on Tuesday, the Ministry of Tourism asked all hotel and tourism establishments to take precautionary measures. ‘We urge tourists not to take risks and follow latest developments related to the tropical storm Hikaa before venturing out,’ the ministry mentioned.

Ferry solutions halted

The Ministry of Transport and Communications (MoTC) has urged all ferry owners to take additional precaution. In a statement, MoTC mentioned, ‘In compliance with the maritime security, we urge all ferry owners to take additional precaution prior to operating trips among Shinas and Masirah Island.
‘Ferry operators need to stick to climate updates by the Public Authority for Civil Aviation (PACA).’

The National Ferries Company also issued a statement in this regard.
It mentioned, ‘In view of the developing cyclonic storm Hikaa in the Arabian Sea and associated adverse weather conditions, we are temporarily suspending trips on the Shannah-Masirah route from Monday, September 23 evening. This is for passengers’ security.’

MoE closes schools

In a statement, the Ministry of Education (MoE) mentioned, ‘After coordinating with the National Multi Hazard Early Warning Center, we are announcing the closure of all private and government schools in South Sharqiyah and Al Wusta from Tuesday afternoon, September 24 till Thursday, September 26.

‘The decision was made after warnings were issued by PACA that the weather may take a turn for the worse in the next 24 hours.’

Information Source: Muscat Daily

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