Sharjah - Labour Dwellings Gutted in Oil Blaze


Labour dwellings gutted in oil blaze

Sharjah - Feb. 17: SHARJAH Civil Defence personnel managed to contain a huge fire that broke out after two diesel tankers of Al Falak Power Company collided at the company's premises in Al Saja area on Friday evening.

Commenting on the accident, Brigadier Ghareeb Sahban, director of the Sharjah Civil Defence said that the fire spread from the tankers and gutted the labourers' accommodation and the caravan office.

No casualties were reported.

"As soon as we were notified about the accident a number of fire extinguishers from the Sharjah Civil Defence swung into action with the help of the army. We also sought the assistance of the Ajman Civil Defence who offered us water tankers that were used to extinguish the fire in less time."

Mohamed Rashid Al Qadi, staff sergeant at Al Muwailah centre of Sharjah Civil Defence said: "When we reached the spot, we found the fire spreading, it had already engulfed the labourers' accommodation and was moving towards the company's warehouses. We began by containing the blaze that was following the trail of oil spread on the land. This ensured the safety of other diesel tankers that were parked nearby."

"The blaze was put off in around two hours."

Some of the labourers, who were eyewitness to the accident, said when they saw fire at the kitchen of their accommodation, they immediately alerted and rescued their colleagues who were still inside.

Car fire

In another accident, fire broke out in two cars belonging to two different used car showrooms in Abu Shaghara on Friday.

Civil Defence personnel controlled the blaze in minutes and prevented it from spreading to other cars on display.

Mohamed Shah, the owner of one of the burnt cars said that upon his return from Friday prayers he was shocked to find police and civil defence personnel around his showroom trying to douse the fire.

"I really don't know what is the cause of the fire. I am more shocked by the fact that one of the burnt cars was run by diesel and diesel cars are generally considered to be fire resistant."

According to a source at the Sharjah Civil Defence, Sharjah Police are currently investigating into the causes of both the fire accidents.
Pet dogs flaunt looks and skills

DUBAI - FEB. 17:AS EACH continent or each country has its own system of classifying canines, the UK system which has been adopted by dog lovers in the UAE, has a total of seven.

This is according to Sandra Johnston, a Dubai-based dog lover who has been actively helping organise dogs shows for the past seven years and who said that allowing children to care for these animals will make them more responsible individuals.

"Dogs are important in family life. They can (instill) that sense of responsibility in children because our little ones will learn how to care for them, look after them, to bathe them and to feed them," Johnston said when interviewed in between her hosting of one of the Dog Show sections at the Pet Show held in Nad Al Sheba on Saturday.

"There are several systems throughout the world of classifying dogs. The UK system allows knowing the kind of dog easily," she said.

Enumerating the seven with tidbits of history from centuries of old, Johnston said the UK system was developed through decades.

The seven classifications are the hounds, the gundogs, the terriers, the utility group, the pastoral group, the working dogs and the toys.

The hounds, Johnston said, has over 20 breeds. One of them is the beagle made popular by the character Snoopy.

She said hounds are very intelligent and "are not supposed to be obedient because they are intelligent," which have been bred for stamina although they are not killers.

Other dogs under this classification which have been developed to "hunt by sight or by scent" include the saluki, Afghan hounds, the borzoi, the Irish woofhounds, the whippets (the most popular since these can live just anywhere and with families), the greyhounds and the dachshunds with six types, one coming from Africa.

In contrast to the hounds are the gundogs, said Johnston who claimed that if the hounds were intelligent and they could not be told what to do, the gundogs such as the labradors, the golden retrievers, the cocker spaniels and the weimaraners otherwise known as the "gray ghosts" because of its shimmery coat and eyes in the dark, are "obedient."

These are obedient because these have been basically developed to look for and pick up "birds that have been shot at," Johnston said.

The terriers, have been named so from the French term for earth which is "terre." Thus, these are the dogs which dig the soil and go under holes to chase and kill rabbits, rats and the like.

"They are fearless and were originally used by cattle owners on trips to protect themselves and their money as well as their cattle (from bandits)," explained Johnston.

The fourth classification of dogs are the utility group since these are the likes of the poodles, the spaniels and the dalmatians used for a number of reasons; in contrast to the pastoral group responsible for the herds in the pasture such as the sheep, the cattle.

Examples of the pastoral group are the sheepdogs and the German shepherds.

The rotweillers which originated in Rotweille, Germany as special assistants to the butchers in the 1400s to 1500s; the Siberian huskies or the sled dogs and the doberman named after European Louis Doberman who trained his dog to protect him, are known as the working dogs "because they are there to do specific tasks," said Johnston.

The last classification of dogs are the toys which include the likes of the maltese, the chihuahua and the Japanese chin.

"These are called lap dogs and are basically there for companionship," said Johnston, as she again stressed the importance of dogs in one's life: "Stroking them could help us lower down our blood pressure. They can help us relax and walking with them will also help us find friends (because they can be good conversation piece.)"

Wind kicks up dust across the nation

UAE - FEB. 17: ALMOST the entire UAE barring East Coast area of the country was swept by dust on Saturday, creating problems for the motorists in particular.

Duty Forecaster at Dubai International Airport Weather Department, Dr SK Gupta said that a moderate Shamal (North Westerly wind) carried the dust, which enveloped Dubai, Sharjah, Abu Dhabi, Al Ain and other parts of the UAE.

He said that the Shamal was weak and hence could not reach the eastern coast of the country, leaving Fujairah and its surroundings unaffected from the dusty and hazy weather condition.

He said that fog formation would also be possible around the coastal areas due to high humidity.

The change in the weather conditions also brought down the temperatures significantly.

Dubai and Sharjah recorded the maximum temperatures of 24.7 degree Celsius on Saturday while the corresponding figures for these places on Friday were 32.2 and 33 degree Celsius.

Strong advected dust from northern Gulf was responsible for the dust in the UAE and clarified that it could not be called dust storm as the dust was not driven by strong winds.

He said that the Shamal would weaken from tomorrow but only to become quite strong from Wednesday onwards which would continue up to Friday.

He said that the strong Shamal would bring the temperatures considerably down in the range of 23-24 degree Celsius.

"I was facing a good amount of difficulty while driving home from Dubai to Sharjah in the evening," remarked an office goer B. Khan.
Lunar eclipse will be seen on Thursday in western region

ABU DHABI - FEB. 17: Emirates Astronomical Society (EAS) has announced that full lunar eclipse will be visible in western region of the UAE on Feb.21. It will also be sighted in the western parts of Africa, Europe, the Atlantic Ocean and many parts of two Americas.

Engineer Mohammed Shuwkat Awda, rapporteur of the EAS and chairman of the Islamic Crescents' Observation Project (ICOP) said that "the moon would set before completion of all phases of eclipse in most parts of Asia. These areas will only see the beginning of eclipse."

He added that the moon would set in Abu Dhabi city at 06:56pm on Thursday, adding that the moon will be invisible before completion of its entry in the shadow zone during sunset.

During a total lunar eclipse, the Moon's disk can take on a dramatically colourful appearance from bright orange to blood red to dark brown and (rarely) very dark gray. An eclipse of the Moon can only take place at full Moon, and only if the Moon passes through some portion of Earth's shadow. The shadow is actually composed of two cone-shaped parts, one nested inside the other. The outer shadow or penumbra is a zone where Earth blocks some (but not all) of the Sun's rays. In contrast, the inner shadow or umbra is a region where Earth blocks all direct sunlight from reaching the Moon.

The partial eclipse begins as the Moon's eastern edge slowly moves into the Earth's umbral shadow. During the partial phases, it takes just over an hour for the Moon's orbital motion to carry it entirely within the Earth's dark umbra. The colour and brightness of the totally eclipsed Moon can vary considerably from one eclipse to another. Dark eclipses are caused by volcanic gas and dust, which filters and blocks much of the Sun's light from reaching the Moon. But since no major volcanic eruptions have taken place recently, the Moon will probably take on a vivid red or orange colour during the total phase.

After the total phase ends, it is once again followed by a partial eclipse as the Moon gradually leaves the umbral shadow.

The total phase of a lunar eclipse is called totality. At this time, the Moon is completely immersed within the Earth's dark umbral shadow.

Water consumption doubles in 5 years

UAE - FEB. 17: THE Middle East's beverage markets continue to develop exponentially, creating new opportunities for producers and distributors of bottled waters, soft drinks and tea and coffee brands.

With the highest per capita liquid consumption in the world, the Middle East and wider region offers fantastic opportunities for companies in the drinks sector.

The United Arab Emirates has reached the highest levels of per capita consumption of 635 litres a year, compared to the global average of 197 litres in 2006.

Hot and dusty conditions, a fast-growing population, and increasingly sophisticated demand for "designer" drinks have all fuelled growth in the market.

Bottled water sales in the Middle East have more than doubled in the past five years, according to research from Zenith International.

Growth has been spectacular in a number of countries, with a well-established local bottled water industry competing aggressively with international market entrants.

In addition, the region provides a point of entry to emerging Asian markets, with major potential for sustained growth in countries such as India and Pakistan, which have large populations but low bottled water penetration, according to pioneering research compiled by the region's largest food, drink, foodservice and hospitality equipment exhibition.

Gulfood 2008, which runs from 24 - 27 February 2008 at Dubai International Convention and Exhibition Centre (DICEC), aims to provide a focused forum of this dynamic sector, through the launch of a dedicated beverage and beverage equipment section which will be supported by a series of specialist Beverage Opportunity Workshops.

Organised by industry specialist Zenith International, the workshops are a series of management and technical briefings on beverage trends, innovation and opportunities for the Gulf region.

Speakers include market leading regional companies, Zenith International experts and global suppliers to the industry with a track record of excellence.

Exhibitions General Manager, Dubai World Trade Centre, Trixee Loh said, "As a territory which has traditionally relied upon a high volume of beverage imports, this region has become a major market for drinks producers."

In recent years, local and regionally-focused firms have captured a significant share of the existing market and helped create new markets, he added.

"Given this ongoing development and the huge range of economic opportunities that this has created, we felt that it was appropriate to increase the focus on the drinks sector at Gulfood," she added.

Chairman of Zenith International, Richard Hall said, "With strong growth across the regional market and significant potential in the emerging product categories, we are witnessing unprecedented opportunities in the regional beverage sector in 2008."

Beverage and beverage equipment companies set to participate in this year's show include Animo of The Netherlands, Arrow Juice Factory from Saudi Arabia, Aujan Industries from the UAE, Bon Café from UAE, Bunn Corporation of the USA, Dilmah from Sir Lanka, Nuova Simonelli of Italy, Nespresso and Nestle Waters from the UAE and Power Horse of Austria.

The 13th Gulfood Exhibition will be held at the Dubai International Convention and Exhibition Centre from 24-27 February 2008. 


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