Look: Boats form 'UAE' off Abu Dhabi beach to set world record

Over 50 boats were moved from the marinas situated in Abu Dhabi, Yas Island, as well as from the Emirates Palace to Al Lulu Island to form the acronym

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Nandini Sircar

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Photos: Supplied
Photos: Supplied

Published: Tue 26 Dec 2023, 5:12 PM

Last updated: Tue 26 Dec 2023, 9:54 PM

The UAE set a new world record for creating the largest word formed with boats.

Over 50 boats were parked at Al Lulu Island in Abu Dhabi recently to form the acronym ‘UAE’ helping the country achieve a new Guinness World Records title.

The boat tie-up featured a variety of vessels, ranging from water sports boats and fishing boats to pontoons and cruising boats from the Captain’s Club.

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Members of the boat club initially thought of an idea centred around commemorating the number 52 marking the 52nd year of the National Day.

“But later we pivoted to devising a long-term celebration plan for the UAE so we thought let’s instead focus on the acronym UAE as our dedication to the country. Therefore, we used the number 52 by utilising the exact number of boats to create the acronym for the United Arab Emirates,” said Bashar Mihyar, Marketing Director at the Captain’s Club.

Bashar Mihyar, Marketing Director at the Captain’s Club.
Bashar Mihyar, Marketing Director at the Captain’s Club.

Describing the event, Mihyar said that at around 1 am, boats were prepared for relocation. They were moved from the marinas situated in Abu Dhabi, Yas Island, as well as from the Emirates Palace to Al Lulu Island which is off the coast of Abu Dhabi.

He said, “We also organised a grand barbecue for the entire team to enjoy before we started working. At the break of dawn, people got into their working spirit. We started parking the boats around 6 am into the shape. We formed the first vertical lines of the letters ‘U’, ‘A’ ,and ‘E’ and then we filled in the gaps as we progressed.”

“We ensured all anchors and necessary equipment were set up. To prepare for the record attempt, we had drones and photographers on standby, along with skilled professionals to measure the dimensions,” added the Jordanian expat.

Attempt took seven-and-a-half hours

The record attempt that took seven-and-a-half hours to accomplish apparently entailed several challenges along the way.

“The display had a width of 380 metres and height of 155m. The primary challenge was to stabilize these 52 boats. It took 64 captains to execute this with four to five captains working on a boat each time. It took approximately 20-30 minutes to secure each boat in its position. We had to ensure that the boats remained steady. For things to remain in a line the adjacent ones also had to be stable. This process followed a specific procedure.”

Mihyar highlights while parking a car usually means it stays put, docking a boat involves numerous factors.

“When you park a boat then there are a bunch of factors that play a part. In a situation like this, the problem was there was no jetty or marina where it could be parked. In the sea, there was nothing that was holding the boats. We had to make sure that the lines remained straight. We had a four-point anchor, two anchors from the front and back of the boats so that the vessels remained in their place. The task required to be completed according to the precise calculations given to and authorised by the Guinness World Records.”

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