KUWAIT CITY, Dec 7: Kuwait witnessed sporadic rains in various parts of the country non-stop for hours — day and night — resulting in pools of water in a number of internal and highway roads, as well ‘flooding’ some open areas with rain flows, which caused traffic jams and some accidents, reports Al-Qabas daily. This led to the Ministry of the Interior announcing the closure of the King Fahd Expressway from the entrance to Beirut Street towards Kuwait City, and in the Capital Governorate.
In addition to that, the Jahra Road was closed after its intersection with Al-Ghazali towards the City Center, as well as Al-Sanater Street in the Ahmadi Governorate. Meanwhile, around the clock, the emergency teams of the Public Works, the Ministry of the Interior, and the Ministry of Health dealt with the situation and the corresponding incident at a reasonable speed, as the medical emergency received about 170 reports within 12 hours, resulting from rain accidents. The amounts of rain varied from one region to another throughout the country, the highest was in the Sabahiya and Sabah Al-Nasser regions, while the Dairy Producers Union complained about what it called “the sinking of Sulaibiya due to the widening of the excavations which hampered the delivery of products to consumers.”
The residents of Sabah Al-Ahmad City also expressed their concern saying “our suffering increases with every rainy season, and no solutions are on the horizon!” The emergency teams from the Ministry of Works dealt with pools of water which confused traffic and some open places looked like lakes, but it did not rise to the point of closing highways or roads tunnels, with the exception of three while the rest of the roads continued to operate normally, although the traffic suffered and in some areas moved at a snail’s pace.
The spokesman of the Public Works Authority, Ahmed Al-Saleh, said the amount of rain was concentrated in the center of the country and some southern regions, indicating that the emergency teams of the Ministry and Public Authority for Roads and Land Transport (PART), dealt with some water pools in the interior areas and highways. Al-Saleh added that despite the continuation and increasing amounts of rain, the drainage network was able to suck much of the water, pointing out that the work teams are working 24/7 to ensure the process of draining water does not stop.
He said that there is continuous coordination between the Works, the Civil Defense and the relevant authorities, to deal immediately with any communication that reaches the Ministry through social media channels and the hotline 150, with teams distributed to all regions to monitor any water gathering and inform the emergency teams to deal with it. Meanwhile, informed sources at PART told the daily, traffic was normal at all the country’s tunnels although the movement was slow but the main thing is there were no stoppages and none of them were closed during the past hours.
The sources added that the pumps of the Mangaf tunnel, which is famous for disruption due to flooding, worked to withdraw water in a timely manner, and the traffic in the tunnel remained normal without closing it. However, the head of the Sabah Al-Ahmad People’s Committee, Turki Al-Osaimi, criticized what he called “the poor situation of the city, and the failure to provide radical solutions to protect it during the rainy season, despite the recurrence of the problem in the past years.” Al-Osaimi told the daily that the facilities of a number of government buildings in the city, including schools and health centers, suffered from water overflow due to the current wave of rain, in addition to some roofs of houses unable to bear the burden.
Al-Osaimi added that a number of roads in the southeastern side, adjacent to the fourth and fifth suburbs of Sabah Al-Ahmad City, witnessed large water pools and overflowing sewage due to the lack of sewage stations and the fullness of temporary basins designated for collecting rainwater, indicating that the rain wave caused gravel and crucibles to fly on main roads at the city level, due to poor asphalt work in those locations. Air traffic at Kuwait International Airport was normal and the take-off and landing movements were not affected due to rain and weather fluctuations. The official spokesman for the Directorate-General of Civil Aviation, Sa’ad Al-Otaibi, said the flight schedules proceed according to the scheduled dates without and was smooth and normal.
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