Sign in Register
Posted On: 12 February 2009 08:17 am
Updated On: 12 November 2020 02:09 pm

Sandstorm paralyses city; Hamad receives casualties

Paper Boy
Paper Boy
Discuss here!
Start a discussion
Many people suffered breathing problems after inhaling dust following the strong dust storm that lashed the country around noon yesterday. Thick layers of dust blanketed the city and its outskirts, reducing visibility below 200 metre at times. The daylight transformed into a strange redish hue, when a sudden wave of dust swept through the country. The Emergency Department at the Hamad Medical Corporation yesterday received several cases of allergic and asthma patients, who suffered breathing difficulties having been exposed to the dust winds. A number of traffic accidents were also reported. The dusty weather would prevail until afternoon today. However, the strong northwesterly winds are expected to continue until evening tomorrow, but with reduced speed, according to the Meteorology Department. “A deep low pressure over north of the Gulf moving to the east coupled with strong winds have caused a dust storm all over the region, lowering temperature and reducing visibility below 200 metre,” a forecaster from the department told The Peninsula last evening. The department has issued a warning to fishermen not to go to the sea until the winds subsided probably by tomorrow. Motorists as well as pedestrians were caught unawares in the inclement weather yesterday. Work in the construction sites were affected, as labourers fought with the dust winds. Schools cancelled all outdoor activities. Face masks became an immediate hit among residents. Pharmacies and neighbourhood stores made brisk business by selling the masks. A senior official of a leading community school said some children, with allergic problems were affected by the dust winds. “They were treated in the school clinic and none of the cases were serious. We forced all children to stay inside their classrooms as soon the dust storm surfaced,” said the official. “We were just leaving the playground when we saw a sudden wave of dust coming and spreading. Children were eager to go out and watch but the teachers were forcing us to stay inside,” said a female student from the same school. The Industrial Area was the worst hit as many workshops were forced to stop work due to the fiery winds. “We could not do any painting on the vehicles due to the dust winds. Many of our works are pending,” said a resident running a garage in the Industrial Area. Meanwhile, doctors have warned allergic patients to take precautions against the dusty weather. “They should avoid exposure to outside weather. For them, face masks may not help to prevent the delicate dust particles. Breathing through the mouth due to cold and snuffed nose may complicate their situation,” said a private physician. He said such patients could develop breathing problems as an immediate effect of inhaling dust, and if left untreated their condition may worsen and lead to chest infections. The title of this is SOOOOO over-dramatic.