Sunday 20 January 2019

Two killed as Cyclone Mekunu lashes Oman

MUSCAT, May 26, 2018

Cyclone Mekunu has hit southern Oman with high winds and rain, killing a 12-year-old girl and a man and leaving three other people injured, reported BBC, citing senior government officials.
Oman state TV showed large areas of flooding in Dhofar and Al Wusta provinces, with dozens of vehicles submerged.
Clearing operations started in southern Oman region following heavy rainstorms brought by Cyclone Mekunu that triggered flash floods, closed the Salalah International Airport, knocked down billboards and cut off power lines in parts of Dhofar and Al Wusta provinces, reported Oman news agency.
The Royal Oman Police, reported that an besides the girl, an Omani citizen was also killed after his vehicle was washed away in a valley in Auqad.
According to the police, the girl was killed after wind swept her against a wall.
Meanwhile along with helicopters and humanitarian relief on board, two Indian navy ships have set sail from India to Oman. The two ships, INS Deepak and INS Kochi, sailed from Mumbai yesterday.two Indian navy ships have set sail for Oman with humanitarian relief on board, according to the Indian embassy’s official Twitter handle.
"In line with India's tradition to be the first responder in a crisis situation in neighborhood, two ships of Indian Navy,  INS Deepak and INS Kochi, have sailed from Mumbai yesterday. They have humanitarian aid material on board. They are on stand by to assist at Salalah if required," it stated.
Forecasters warned of flash floods, saying that Salalah could see at least 20cm of rain - twice the average amount for a whole year, said the report.
Authorities have told residents to stay inside and Salalah's airport has been closed until midnight on Saturday local time (20:00 GMT).
The cyclone had intensified in strength yesterday but has now been downgraded and officials said it would weaken further into a tropical storm, said the report.
Cyclone Mekunu's landfall to the west of Salalah, Oman's second city, came a day after it lashed the Yemeni island of Socotra, where at least seven people were reported to have been killed.
Thousands of residents near coastal areas in Dhofar and Al Wusta had been moved to shelters as 170km/h (105mph) winds and torrential rain hammered the region, the officials were quoted as saying by the BBC.
About 10,000 people had been evacuated from schools and government buildings, mainly in Salalah, civil defence authorities said.

Tags: Oman |

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