Delight over Doha’s November rains has turned to dismay for some residents who are reporting flooding in parts of the country that are not equipped to handle sudden influxes of water.
UPDATE | Thursday, Nov. 21, 9am
After hours of rainfall, many Qatar residents woke up this morning to flooded neighborhoods. Trucks have been spotted pumping water out of the streets.
According to the MET’s most recent forecast, the “unstable weather” is expected to continue until at least tonight. As parts of Qatar see more rain and thunderstorms today, forecasters are also warning of a sudden drop in temperatures:
“The wind will continue till the end of next week which will lead the temperature fall where the maximum temperature will be 20-23 degrees Celsius and the minimum temperature will be 18-21 degrees Celsius at night, the minimum temperature will fall to less than 18 degrees Celsius (64F) in southern parts.”
What are you seeing outside?
UPDATE | 3:23pm
The heavy rain over Doha today has caused leaks and flooding at Villaggio Mall, prompting some stores to close, including Vodafone. When reached by phone, an employee of the mall said that the VIP area and the food court have not been affected, and the entire facility has not closed yet, though may take that decision later.
The northern part of Qatar appears to be hardest-hit, with residents reporting sightings of water pooling on local roads in and around Al Shamal and Al Ruwais.
Resident Hamad Al-Thani, who took above footage of the flooding yesterday and headed north today as well, told Doha News:
“I noticed the ponds of rainwater in the desert grew in size after Al-Zubara interchange with local roads flooding. When I arrived to Al Shamal, the desert was submerged with water and many of the local roads were flooded. Al-Shamal industrial area was flooded with rain water and according to the locals, it was the strongest rain they have seen in years. As a result of this schools, in the area were closed for the day.”
Flooding has also been spotted on roads in Al Sadd, West Bay and elsewhere:
Tropical showers in Doha! pic.twitter.com/qVHI9kVyid
— YvettevEechoud (@YvettevEechoud) November 20, 2013
— Ayşe Alibeyoğlu (@aysealibey) November 20, 2013
The Qatar Meteorology Department confirmed to Doha News that the rainfall has been “more than usual,” but said that there is no cause for concern. A forecaster added that there is a chance of thunderstorms today, but the rain is expected to stop by tomorrow morning.
Tackling the flooding
Yesterday, Ashghal said it had been taking measures to reduce flooding by contracting a drainage company to keep networks clear. It is also distributing mobile pumps in areas that do not have rainwater drainage networks and sent out suction tanks to clear floods. In a statement, it said:
“In addition to that, all rainwater drainage networks in tunnels and key areas like Souq Waqef have been cleaned again to avoid any chance of floods in those areas throughout the heavy rain season. Additional emergency teams were formed to clean up any effluent that might be blocked during after the rainfall.”
Have you been affected by the rain today? Thoughts?