Historic Rainstorm Wreaks Havoc in UAE, Disrupts Flights and Floods Major Roads

The United Arab Emirates is grappling with the aftermath of a historic rainstorm that deluged the nation on Tuesday, causing unprecedented flooding and disruptions. Dubai International Airport, a pivotal global travel hub, is struggling to manage a backlog of flights due to a flooded runway. Major roads remain inundated, severely affecting traffic and daily operations.

Recorded as the heaviest rainfall in 75 years, the storm has effectively brought much of the UAE to a standstill. In Dubai, major thoroughfares were reduced to a crawl, with some vehicles, including buses, nearly submerged underwater. Social media footage displayed dramatic scenes of malls and homes overwhelmed by water leaks.

Emergency services were stretched, with firefighters using trucks to pump waist-deep water from flooded streets while stranded drivers navigated around abandoned vehicles. The main road connecting Dubai and Abu Dhabi was also shut down, adding to the chaos.

The airport faced significant challenges in resuming operations, with ongoing delays and diversions affecting thousands of travelers. Emirates, the largest carrier at the airport, had to suspend check-in services on Wednesday, further complicating the situation.

Climate experts have linked the rainstorm, which initially hit neighboring Oman, to global warming. This points to a broader trend of extreme weather conditions exacerbated by inadequate local infrastructure.

President Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan has ordered a comprehensive assessment of the damage and directed support for those affected by the storm. As the UAE begins its recovery, the focus is also turning to improving resilience against such rare but increasingly likely weather events.

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