Coronavirus: Dubai district placed in lockdown for two weeks as clean-up drive is stepped up

Restrictions on traffic and movement in Al Ras will be increased as part of efforts to tackle the spread of the pandemic

DUBAI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES , March 24 – 2020 :- View of the quiet Dubai Creek as people are staying home as a preventive measure against coronavirus in Deira Dubai. (Pawan Singh / The National) For News/Online/Standalone.
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Latest: Barricades block the streets of Dubai neighbourhood on lockdown

One of Dubai's oldest districts has been placed in lockdown for two weeks to aid efforts to contain the spread of coronavirus.

Roads leading to Al Ras, in Deira, will be sealed off and metros will not stop in the area from Tuesday to allow for an ongoing sterilisation programme to be stepped up.

Dubai Police said people who were not residents of Al Ras were prohibited from travelling to the area.

Local residents will receive essential supplies from Dubai Health Authority, police said.

They said they wanted to do everything possible to protect the area’s residents.

The heightened restrictions were announced by Dubai's Supreme Committee of Crisis and Disaster Management.

Officials said the tough measures were necessary due to the high density of population in the area.

Dubai’s Roads and Transport Authority announced the main entrances leading to the area from Al Musalla, Al Khaleej and Baniyas Streets would be closed.

The plan also includes the temporary closure of three stations on the Dubai Metro Green Line. They are Al Ras, Palm Deira and Baniyas Square.

Bus route diversions

The metro will pass through the area without stopping at the stations.

All bus routes to Baniyas will be diverted to Al Musalla, Al Khaleej and Omar Bin Al Khattab streets, and all taxi movement to the area will be restricted.

The UAE confirmed earlier this week that a major clean-up of roads and streets would be extended until the morning of April 5.

Residents must stay in doors - unless for essential travel such as hospital appointments - from 8pm to 6am each day while the operation is in place.

Meanwhile, Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed, Crown Prince of Dubai, announced that a Centre for Coronavirus Control would be established under the chairmanship of Dr Amer Al Sharif.

The new centre will include representatives from the Ministry of Health and Prevention and other relevant authorities in the emirate.

It will be prepare strategic plans and recommendations to battle pandemics, including Covid-19, and develop rapid intervention plans in co-ordination with competent bodies at the public and private sectors.