UAE desalination plant ordered shut over contamination concerns

The RAK plant cannot reopen until the cause of the contamination is addressed, says the head of public health at the RAK municipality.

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A desalination plant in Ras Al Khaimah has been closed after its water was found to be contaminated.

The owner has also been fined, reported Al Ittihad, the Arabic-language sister paper of The National.

The plant has not been named and neither the amount of the fine nor  the nature of the contamination has been revealed.

Mubarak Al Shamsi, head of the RAK Municipality, said 20 breaches were found at the emirate’s 45 desalination plants last year, with some being closed temporarily.

Desalination plants in RAK are required to meet HACCP – Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Points – food safety standards.

Inspectors test water samples and  check staff and equipment hygiene.

Mr Al Shamsi warned owners to be stringent about sanitary requirements and ensure the cleanliness of their water.

Khalifa Al Maktoum, head of public health at the municipality, said the plant could reopen when the cause of the contamination had been addressed and after demonstrating that its water was safe.