After bad weather, the bed of an abandoned water channel was exposed in Oman

After bad weather, the bed of an abandoned water channel was exposed in Oman

Source: Times News Service
A long-dried-up water channel was discovered in the north of Oman after severe weather. The cyclone that struck the Ibri vilayet of Ad Dhahirah province brought winds and rains, which caused mudflows that washed away a layer of sand and debris. The stone bed of an ancient irrigation structure, aflaj, appeared from under the exposed earth, the Times of Oman reports.

Aflaj (plural of falaj, which means divided into parts in Arabic) is an irrigation system used since ancient times in Oman in conditions of limited water resources. It is believed that they originated there in 500 AD, but according to some archaeological evidence, Aflaj existed in this arid region as early as 2500 BC. In 2006, five of the more than 3,000 Omani aflaj received the status of a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Currently, due to the lowering of the groundwater level, the Omani water channels are under threat.

According to Hilal bin Amer al Qasmi, a researcher of Omani heritage and author of a book on the engineering structure of the Aflaj Sultanate for centuries, the irrigation canal that supplied water to the whole area was built of stone and clay with a hollow pipe inside to allow its purification. The inner surface was treated with a waterproof solution. The channel was approximately 115 meters long, 90 cm wide, and 67 cm in diameter. There was a vent at the top for cleaning and maintenance of the channel.

Of the more than 4,000 aflaj in Oman, 3,000 are still active.
# Oman
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