This Day in History

This Day in History (1976): Rowing gently down Third Street

Downpour drenches Dhahran, damages homes and covers streets.

This Day in History (1976): Rowing gently down Third Street

From the Nov. 17, 1976 edition of The Arabian Sun


Moviegoers, TV viewers, dog walkers, and anyone who had a window to peer from will surely put down the evening of Nov. 8 as a night to remember.


At about 7:30 p.m., the skies over Dhahran suddenly opened to dump 1.15 inches fo rain in less than an hour, a downpour that quickly inundated patios, streets, and more than a few houses.


Even more traumatic were the lightning flashes that lit up the sky at the same time as they blacked-out large sections of al-Khobar, Dammam, Dhahran North, and Dhahran proper.


The biggest casualty was the Aramco 66,000 volt transformer at Depco, which burned out beyond repair when lightning hit an associated power line at about 8:20 p.m. The blow out tripped the Depco switch, cutting off power to Dhahran, Dammam, al-Khobar, the University of Petroleum and Minerals campus, and points in between.


Caption for top photo: Dhahran's Nov. 8 rainfall proved something of a windfall for youngsters who soon found the newly formed Third Street "lake" a perfect place to practice their boating skills. The 1.15-inch downpour brought Dhahran's annual rainfall to 9.95 inches, more than three times the annual average of 2.81 inches.


Other notable Nov. 17 events from year's past:

2019 — The first-known case of COVID-19 is traced to a man in Wuhan, China, who had visited a market there


2000 — A massive landslide in Log pod Mangartom, Slovenia, kills seven and destroys large swaths of property


1986 — The flight crew on Japan Airlines 1628 report seeing a UFO while flying over Alaska


1973 — Amid the Watergate scandal, U.S. President Richard M. Nixon utters his infamous line, "I am not a crook."


1970 — U.S. Lieutenant William Calley goes on trial for the My Lai Massacare in Vietnam


1953 — The remaining inhabitants of the Blasket Islands in Kerry, Ireland, are evacuated to the mainland


1942 — American director and actor Martin Scorsese is born


1903 — The Russian Social Democratic Labor Party splits into two groups: The Bolsheviks and Mensheviks


1810 — Sweden declares war on its ally the United Kingdom to begin the Anglo-Swedish War, although no fighting ever takes place.


1558 — Queen Mary I of England dies and is succeeded by her half-sister Elizabeth I of England, launching the Elizabethan era


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