Waterlogging in Sharjah throws traffic out of gear

SHARJAH — Waterlogging due to a damaged pipeline threw traffic out of gear for more than three hours yesterday morning in the Al Shahba area near Al Qasimi Hospital roundabout in Sharjah.

by

Afkar Ali Ahmed

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Published: Tue 18 Sep 2007, 9:12 AM

Last updated: Sun 5 Apr 2015, 5:11 AM

Motorists heading towards Emirates Road and the industrial areas had to spend a long time on the road with the traffic barely crawling for hours.

A source from Sharjah Municipality told Khaleej Times that the workers of a contracting company were carrying out the road digging work without a No Objection Certificate (NOC) from the municipality.

The unauthorised activity caused damage to the main agricultural water pipeline near the roundabout, resulting in waterlogging.

Tahir Mahjoup, a motorist who was on his way to Dubai through Sharjah Ring Road seemed upset by the traffic snarl. He said that since he was fasting he had wanted to reach his office early to finish some work and return home before Iftar. "But the traffic jam as a result of waterlogging was unbearable," he said.

Another motorist Jamal Khalifa said, "This kind of a problem adds to our stress and makes us lose temper which is not proper when one is fasting."

Meanwhile, Sharjah Municipality spokesman Abdullah Al Shiwaikh told Khaleej Times that an engineer was rushed to the site in the morning to fix the damaged pipeline. The engineer and other staff worked hard to stop the water flow which had filled up the roundabout and the adjoining streets.

He added that tankers were also despatched to the site to suck out water from area.

Al Shiwaikh urged all contracting companies engaged in road projects to first obtain an NOC from the municipality as well as Sharjah Electricity and Water Authority (SEWA) to avoid such problems in the future.

A source from the Sharjah Police said that since the problem occurred at 9.00am, police officers from the Traffic Department had to be deployed to divert traffic in order to deal with the situation.

Speaking to Khaleej Times, SEWA Director-General Al Waleed bin Khadem said that contracting companies causing damage to electric cables, water pipelines while carrying out road construction work in the emirate will be penalised under the new law that was enforced in Sharjah recently.

As per the new law, before executing road projects in areas where cables have been laid, contractors must get an NOC from SEWA.

He added that the law is aimed at ensuring protection to the electricity, water and gas networks in the emirate of Sharjah.

"Violating companies could face fines of up to Dh800,000, besides bearing the material cost," said Bin Khadem.



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