Corniche area where construction work starts after 9pm and continues till past midnight Image Credit: Supplied

ABU DHABI Late night construction is keeping residents awake across Abu Dhabi.

Residents said they are unable to sleep because of the loud drilling, whirring of generators and constant banging of machinery and tools. “It a torture. I have to wear earplugs,” said an Indian expat who lives in the Tourist Club area. He said construction in his neighbourhood starts after 9pm and continues past midnight. “There are days when I am barely able to catch a wink,” he said.

Ramadan permission

An Arab expat who lives on Hamdan Bin Zayed Street said he remains sleep-deprived for most of the week because of constant jack hammering. “I approached the site supervisor to lodge a complaint but he claimed he has permission to work late night till Ramadan. It’s frustrating because we have a different schedule for Ramadan and have to get up a 3am for suhour,” he said.

A man who lives next to the Choithram building near the Corniche said the metal on metal clanging and the piercing beeps of cement trucks moving in reverse often continues till 5am.

“I don’t know why they should have to work overnight,” he said. “There should be a certain schedule and construction firms should stick to it and get the job done,” he added.

According to Abu Dhabi City Municipality, heavy work is not allowed after 7pm but light work could be carried out anytime.

Residents said construction firms are violating the rules. A site supervisor doing night shift said they are under pressure to finish the project. “During Ramadan, the work hours are short. In order to compensate, we work late into the night,” he said. An official at the IMCC (International Management and Construction Corporation) in Abu Dhabi said many workers who are fasting prefer to take night shifts during Ramadan. “We strictly adhere to the six-hour work schedule during Ramadan. The early shift starts at 5.30am and continues till 12.30. But workers who opt for night shifts start at 7pm and finish by 2am,” said the official.

What the rules say

According to Abu Dhabi’s Environment Health and Safety Management System, any activity resulting in excess noise that can have an adverse impact on the peace of a neighbourhood should be undertaken only between 7am and 8pm on working days, and between 9am and 7pm on weekends and public holidays. Complaints about noise pollution can be made at 800 555

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