Heavy Rain and Floods Disrupt Dubai Airport, Kill 19 in Oman

Heavy rains have been pouring across the United Arab Emirates and Oman, leading to deadly flash floods and causing disruptions at Dubai International Airport, the world’s second-busiest airport.

Dubai International Airport reports extremely difficult conditions and is urging some travelers to stay away due to waterlogged facilities.

Further north, a man died after his vehicle was caught in sudden floods.

In Oman, the discovery of a young girl’s body in Saham raised the nation’s death toll to 19 since the beginning of the week.

On Wednesday, roughly 290 flights were either canceled or delayed at Dubai International Airport, a key global transit hub, according to Flight Aware statistics at 21:00 GMT. Additionally, 440 flights experienced delays, the data show.

The airport, which served over 80 million passengers last year and ranks just behind Atlanta’s airport in the U.S., warned that recovery would take “some time.”

Updates suggest travelers avoid visiting Terminal 1 unless confirmed by their airlines and discourage unnecessary trips to the airport.

Emirates, the prominent international airline based in Dubai, has halted check-ins for flights departing from the city until Thursday.

Officials forecast more storms, heavy rainfall, and strong winds, noting several low-lying areas remain flooded.

The United Arab Emirates, neighboring Oman to the north, witnessed its heaviest rainfall in 75 years on Tuesday.

The National Centre of Meteorology reported that 254.8mm of rain fell in less than 24 hours in the Khatm al-Shakla area of Al Ain.

Typically, the country receives 140-200 mm annually, with Dubai averaging just 97 mm. The usual rainfall for April is around 8 mm.

Video from downtown Dubai shows numerous cars submerged on a flooded segment of Sheikh Zayed Road, accompanied by extensive traffic jams.

No casualties were reported in Dubai, but an elderly man died when flash floods swept his vehicle away in Ras al-Khaimah.

Although the rainfall subsided by Tuesday evening, Dubai International Airport still faced disruptions and crowding.

The severe storm that started Tuesday morning led the airport to pause operations temporarily, divert several flights, and cancel numerous others.

The UAE’s National Emergency Crisis Management Authority had earlier advised residents to stay indoors, government employees to work remotely, and private schools to switch to online classes.

In Oman, authorities moved over 1,400 individuals to emergency shelters. Schools and government offices closed as a precautionary measure.

On Sunday, a bus carrying schoolchildren and an adult was engulfed by floodwaters in a wadi in the Al-Mudhaibi area of Sharqiya province, resulting in 11 fatalities.