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News from the United Arab Emirates

Sharjah Power Failure Sends Residents Fleeing

By Dahi Hassan

June 19, 2000

Sharjah - A major power failure lasting more than an hour hit almost half of Sharjah City yesterday due to a transmission and distribution problem.

"One of the power cables was damaged, causing disruption in the distribution and transmission system, then a power failure occurred in around 40 per cent of Sharjah city," the generation manager at Liyya Power Station told Gulf News yesterday.

"Power was restored within less than one hour in almost 50 per cent of the areas affected." It took engineers about an hour to get the power supply fully restored.

Resident S. Shaban said, "I could not stand the heat in my flat when the power went off so I took my wife and three daughters to a shopping mall in Dubai. We stayed there until we heard that the power had been restored."

Shaban said he he had been planning to visit a friend. "But when I called him he told me that they also had been hit by the power cut. So we went to Dubai together."

Amina Rustom, who lives in a ten-storey building, said she had to use the stairs to reach her ninth-floor apartment.

"I went to a nearby bakery. Then, while I was waiting for the lift, the power failed. Thank God I didn't get stuck in the lift."

Ahmed Mahmoud said that the power failure had made it impossible for him to stay home, so he had gathered his four children, including a seven-month-old baby, and taken them for a drive. "I took them on a tour of the town until I knew that the electricity had been restored in our neighbourhood," he said.

-- (, June 19, 2000

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