Salalah, Oct 17 – The road link between Rakhyout and Salalah, which had got damaged by tropical storm Luban, has been re-established. The makeshift road was constructed after Cyclone Mekunu had washed away two bridges, which were important links to Mughsail beach, its bay and one of the major attractions of Salalah: the blowholes. Authorities took up restoration work on war-footing after the storm subsided as this is the only link between all places in western Dhofar and Salalah. Some people who had gone to Rakhyout earlier were stuck there because of the sudden loss of connectivity.
“This is the point where the road got cut during Cyclone Mekunu strike. I appreciate efforts of the authorities in rebuilding the road in such a short span of time,” Bakhit al Sahri, who had to camp in Rakhyout for two extra days after finishing a storm-related assignment.
“Though impact of the weather condition was far less than the previous one, still the task of re-establishing the link was a daunting one for the municipal authorities and other ministries.” Al Sahri was witness to the damage in Rakhyout and Dhalkout after heavy rains at both places.
“Post-Luban, flowing wadis (canals) and waterfalls offered a great view, but watching heavy rains continuously for four hours was quite scary. Huge amount of water and currents damaged roads at many places.” “I saw the Wali (the district administrator) monitoring restoration work in Rakhyout along with the municipality, transport and other officials, as many places in western Dhofar saw disruption due to the storm. There were disruptions between Rakhyout and Dhalkout, while damages were seen in Sarfait, which is close to the Yemen border,” said Al Sahri.
He said Rakhyout and Dhalkout, which are close to the Yemen border, bore the brunt of the storm, which headed towards Yemen.
Salalah City did not face major problems apart from water-logging in some low-lying areas and temporary power disruptions. Waterlogged areas have been cleared by the Salalah Sanitary Drainage Services Company (SSDC) tankers, while electricity issues have been addressed.
“While there were no major power and water supply issues in the city, there were some local issues, including some electric poles tilting due to strong winds. Most of them have been fixed,” said a worker on the job at one of the sites. Normalcy has been restored in the city, while work is on in some affected areas, mostly in eastern and western parts of Dhofar.
Picture: Hamed al Khatir