Emirati father and son, 10, killed in Oman car crash

DUBAI // A 10-year-old Emirati boy and his father were killed and six others injured in a traffic incident in Oman on Monday, Royal Oman Police said. ​A police spokesman said that the family of eight were heading back to the UAE when their vehicle flipped in the Hayma district at around 10am. “It is a very unfortunate incident, it seems like they were on vacation and they were heading back to the UAE when this happened,” the spokesman said. “All those injured were transferred to hospital” He said that the other six passengers sustained moderate to serious injuries. More to follow newsdesk@thenational.ae Powered by WPeMatico

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Health authority urges pregnant women and elderly to avoid performing Haj

DUBAI // The elderly, children under 12, and pregnant women should avoid undertaking the Haj pilgrimage this year, health experts have said. The call comes after fresh cases of Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (Mers) were reported in Jeddah in July. The city is the closest airport to Mecca and the main entry point for pilgrims flying into Saudi Arabia. Doctors have warned people who intend to perform the pilgrimage to first have all of the necessary vaccinations before leaving the UAE. “The recommendation for high risk groups is not to do Haj this year because they have higher risk of complications,” said Dr Farida Al Hosani, manager, communicable diseases department of Public Health at Health Authority Abu Dhabi. “Efforts regarding Mers are a continuous effort though it’s not mainly in Mecca or Medina.” Influenza, muscle cramps and dehydration are the most common health problems pilgrims complain of during Haj,” said ...

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Jail for Sharjah taxi pepper spray attackers

SHARJAH // Two men who pepper sprayed a taxi driver and robbed him have been jailed. The two Arabs were sentenced to six months each after being found guilty of robbing the Sharjah Taxi Company driver in April, spraying him in the eyes to cause temporary blindness before stealing his wallet. Sharjah Criminal Court heard the men stopped the Asian cabbie at midnight in Sharjah and asked him to drive them to Ajman. One of the defendants sat in the front seat, while the other sat in the back. The man in the back held the driver while the other used the pepper spray. The wallet contained Dh900 and bank cards. After the Asian driver regained his sight, he found a mobile phone on the front seat that belonged to one of the defendants and then he reported the incident to police. The driver told the court that the attack ...

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Jail time for men who kidnapped tourist and stole her passport, Dubai court rules

DUBAI // Two Russians kidnapped a Ukrainian tourist after offering her a lift home before assaulting her and stealing her passport. The men, aged 30 and 34, were convicted of kidnap, physical assault and robbery by the Dubai Criminal Court and jailed for two years each. On January 13 this year one of the men approached the woman in Bur Dubai and asked if she knew any good shops to buy clothes for his wife. “He figured I was Ukrainian and started chatting in Russian and told me he was also a tourist,” said the woman, adding that as she was about to leave he asked her where she was staying and offered her a ride home. “He was very nice and being from Russia I felt safe and got into his car but he had a friend in the car,” said the victim. When they drove past Al Rafaa ...

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Ten deaths this year in Dubai from aluminium phosphide poisoning

DUBAI // Ten people have died in the past year due to inhaling aluminium phosphide, police have warned. Salama Blisha bin Ghalidha Al Mheri, of the toxic division at Dubai Police’s General Directorate for Evidence and Criminology, said many of the deaths were due to inhaling aluminium phosphide from pesticides, as well as from inhaling carbon monoxide. Recently, a young Emirati died due to inhaling carbon monoxide and a mother and child reportedly lost their lives due to aluminium phosphide that infiltrated their home through A/C ducts after neighbours had applied pesticides. Elsewhere, two maids died from inhaling carbon monoxide when using a grill in a confined space, and a man and his wife also died in their car due to carbon monoxide, reported The National‘s Arabic sister paper, Aletihad. The material is extremely hazardous so people are being warned not to inhale it in confined spaces and to be ...

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Al Ain Zoo's lowland gorilla Lady dies aged 41

AL AIN // It is the end of an era at Al Ain Zoo, where keepers have announced the passing of one of its most popular attractions – 41-year-old Lady, a lowland gorilla. The much-loved primate, who liked nothing more than watching Barney the purple dinosaur on television, died in her sleep. Lady arrived at the zoo in 1978 as a four-year-old and immediately became a firm favourite with keepers and visitors. She had mostly lived alone since 1998 when her male companion, a gorilla named Maxi, died from natural causes. Lady had become something of a institution at Al Ain Zoo, moving to a new enclosure in 2002 where she had a number of companions, including rabbits and a wallaby. Remembering the zoo’s matriarch, a zoo spokesman said: “It is with sadness that Al Ain Zoo announces the passing away of perhaps its most loved animal, the lowland gorilla ...

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UAE weather: High temps ahead of dust storms later this week

Dust storms may be heading into Dubai later this week but until then, clear skies will dominate weather patterns for the first days of August. Daytime temperatures are forecast to peak at 40°C in Dubai on Monday and into Tuesday. It will be partly cloudy overnight with temperatures falling to 30°C, slightly cooler than Sunday. With humidity in Dubai at about 40 per cent, it will feel more like 61°C on Monday with a 22 kilometre per hour westerly wind. As winds switch direction from the east, dust storms are expected in Dubai from Thursday. It is a similar weather picture for the Northern Emirates. There will be no escape from the summer heat in Abu Dhabi, with temperatures topping 45°C in the capital on Monday, before more clouds will bring slightly cooler temperatures on Tuesday when it is expected to be 40°C. Overnight temperatures will fall to 30°C this ...

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Relatives of patients in long-term care call for exemptions from co-pay rule

ABU DHABI // Families of 27 patients who are receiving long-term care at a rehabilitation centre in the capital have asked to be exempted from having to pay 20 per cent of healthcare costs. Hundreds more have voiced their reservations to the Health Authority Abu Dhabi (Haad) about an insurance rule that took effect last month. Sheikha Abdulla said Emirati families would gladly trade free services and entitlements for free healthcare. “They can take away all the free services they offer the disabled – education, parking and play areas. I don’t want any of it. Just give me free health care,” said Ms Abdulla, whose son, Hamad Al Romaithi, has been receiving care at ProVita International Medical Centre for the past four years. Seven-year-old Hamad suffers from Patau syndrome, a rare chromosomal condition. He is fully dependent on machines for sustenance and breathing. Under the new insurance rule, Ms Abdulla ...

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Acutely ill Emirati patients will not be discharged over unpaid fees: rehabilitation centres

ABU DHABI // Private rehabilitation centres in the emirate have resisted discharging or billing hundreds of acutely ill Emirati patients who cannot afford to pay a percentage of their treatment costs as new insurance rules demand. As of Monday, families of hundreds of patients are required to pay 20 per cent of the cost of treatment, which can mean up to Dh50,000 a month. The announcement of the new copay rule was made on July 1, with rehabilitation centres instructed by Daman Insurance to collect payments. However, many of the 300 families affected said they could not afford to pay. Some have approached government hospitals to transfer their family member, only to be told there was no bed available. In spite of instructions to collect fees, rehabilitation centre chiefs have assured patients and families they remained committed to their care and that no one would be discharged without consent. “We ...

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Dubai Personal Status court to move to Al Gharhoud

DUBAI// The Dubai Personal Status Court will move to its new location in Al Gharhoud in October. Director of the personal status department at the Dubai Courts, Mohammed Al Obaidly, said the move was according to the directions of Sheikh Maktoum bin Mohammed, in order to facilitate procedures and provide faster services. Mr Al Obaidly predicted that the move will help reduce the number of divorce cases because of the further focus which the family disputes amicable settlement section will put into their work. “The new building has 15 halls for the purpose of settling disputes,” said Al Obaidly. He added that the new court building provides a private gate for married couples who are attending settlement hearings and also for divorced couples who wish to meet their children away from home. Mr Al Obaidly noted that the section succeeded in settling 70 per cent of marital disputes referred to ...

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