Unstable weather in UAE: Wet weekend with scattered rainfall and rough seas to continue

Met department insists on previous warning to beachgoers due to roughness in Arabian Gulf and Oman Sea

UAE's official weather forecaster, National Center of Meteorolgy & Seismology (NCMS) confirms the unstable weather will continue on Saturday with a chance of "some rainfall over certain areas from time to time"

NCMS predicts partly cloudy to cloudy weather at times over some northern, eastern and coastal areas of the country.

"The wind will be moderate in general freshening at times especially over the sea. Rough sea in the Arabian Gulf and Oman sea," says NCMS.

The maximum temerature in the coastal areas is expected to be in the range of 22-24 deg C with the minimum staying pleasant at around 18-22 deg C.

The The internal areas of the country to experience max temperature of 22-27 deg C and minimum to be in the cool range of 14-17 deg C.

The max temperature in the mountain areas to stay at around 121-17 deg C and the minimum will drop to 7-11 deg C.





The NCMS forecasts unstable weather condition to continue in the country for the next 24 hours, reported Wam.

According to the report, the weather will be partly cloudy to cloudy until Saturday especially over the northern and eastern regions, with a chance of rain.

The unstable weather conditions will weaken by Saturday afternoon.

The sea will be rough in the Arabian Gulf and Sea of Oman.

Meanwhile, the cold front that made landfall on Thursday morning unleashed its fury across the country in a 48-hour deluge that has resulted in accidents, school closures and emergency plans being executed across the seven emirates.

The country’s National Centre for Meteorology and Seismology has issued an all-points bulletin, warning residents of a storm surge that could bring thunderstorms to parts of the UAE, with high chances of a hail storm to follow over the weekend.

Warnings have also been issued to beach goers, along with advisories for campers that flash flooding risk is in the red zone in the wadis, especially in the northern and eastern part of the emirates.

Speaking to Emirates 24|7, a spokesperson from NCMS urged residents not to take this warning lightly, especially those looking to head outdoors for overnight camping expeditions as the weather heads towards cooler climes.

The spokesperson said: “We are advising people to take precautionary measures, especially when venturing out to the deep sea in Arabian Gulf and Oman Sea during this weekend.

“Drivers should take care while driving during rain and avoid going to wadis where possibilities of flash floods are high, especially the areas near the mountains, during electrical storms.”

Events affected

The unstable weather front hit Qatar on Wednesday, bringing a deluge of rainfall and flooding in parts of Doha before making landfall in the UAE on Thursday morning, prompting the closure of the Dubai Airshow in the morning, along with schools shutting across the UAE.

Meanwhile, events such as the fifth Beat Diabetes Walkathon, which was due to be held Friday was postponed to 6 December at Zabeel Park by organisers, the Landmark Group, on account of the weather.

The NCMS warned of unstable weather across the UAE, warning that the amount of clouds will increase in time, possibly even developing into towering clouds that are associated with rainfall and thunderstorms, causing floods in valleys.

The spokesperson said: “The rainfall will hit all of UAE starting in the western parts, namely Abu Dhabi and Al Ain, before gradually moving to Dubai, Umm Al Quwain, Fujairah and Ras Al Khaimah.”

Parts of the western region experienced rainfall as high as 189mm.

Residents, especially those driving, are warned of strong winds causing rising dust/sand over some areas and reducing horizontal visibility.

The temperatures are likely to decrease by four degrees in the internal areas, while the mountainous regions can see the mercury hit three degrees Celsius.

Warning to campers

The Director General of Police Operations at Abu Dhabi Police encouraged citizens and residents who enjoy wilderness trips and venture out to camp over the weekends, to observe weather changes before departing on their trips, especially if they are heading to the eastern and southern parts of the country.

In order to maintain their safety, Abu Dhabi police has stated those who would like to go to these areas must avoid water-gathering areas, water valleys, natural water channels, and water-immersed locations.

They also advised wilderness travellers and campers to follow a number of safety measures during their trips, including avoiding camping in water valleys in case of rain or flash floods, not to risk crossing flooded water valleys, keeping the children away from water valleys and marshes, and avoiding low lying lands and the bottomlands of valleys.

The procedures also include abstaining from standing and using radio devices and cellphones in uncovered areas during lighting and thunder storms.

Tour guides that run camping trips across the UAE have asked residents to ensure cellphones are charged before venturing out on private journeys.

Ashford Carter, who is a freelance tour guide, stated: “These warnings should not be taken lightly. We must respect the weather. If you are bent on camping this weekend, travel in a convoy of minimum two cars, with preferably a walkie talkie to communicate with each other.

“Also, make sure your cellphones are charged and let someone know you which general area you are planning to head out to. If you haven’t checked in by a certain time, they should be aware to call for help.”

Carter also stated that the cars should be in prime shape, with drivers adhering to safety rules.

Major General Al Menhali of Abu Dhabi Police echoed the statement, asking all motorists to abide by designated speed limits, keep a safety distance between vehicles and wear seatbelts.

Drivers must also refrain from using hand held devices while driving, remaining in their lane and avoiding improper overtaking.

He also called upon drivers to carry out regular vehicle inspections, especially tires, breaks, and front and rear windscreen wipers.

Drivers are also advised to change engine oil, air filters, and the other parts that require changing and regular maintenance. This helps to avoid malfunctions and accidents.

Calm after the storm

The weather should turn calmer by Saturday, stated the NCMS, however, unstable weather will continue over northern and eastern areas, with increasing amount of clouds, associated with rainfall.

The weather will start to become stable gradually over the country by Saturday evening, although with a chance of rain over northern and eastern areas.

The winds will be moderate to fresh and sea be rough at times, along with of some clouds over Arabian Gulf and Oman Sea.

Motorists cautioned; Officials spell out precautionary measures 

Authorities warn residents who are planning to hit the road this weekend. In general, more caution is required, explained Dubai Police Major-General Mohammed Saif Al Zafin.

"Motorists should turn on their lights and cut down the speed. In case of rain or fog there is reduced visibility," he commented.
Similarly, the RTA advises that reduced visibility requires the motorist to look as far ahead as possible. Rather than the center line, the pavement line on the right side of the road should be used for guidance.

Al Zafin continued: "Depending on the road and the rainfall, accumulation of water can be found at certain locations. This means you cannot stop whenever you want. Your vehicle will need longer to stop. With a lower speed the car brakes easier."

The Traffic Department of the Road and Transport Authority (RTA) developed a flyer informing commuters on what to do on the road in cases of rain, fog, or storm.

"When the first raindrops fall, roads become slippery, and with more rainfall the tires' grip on the surface tends to lose. This requires the driver to reduce his speed, and ensure keeping a gap between his vehicle and the vehicle in front of him to suit the changing weather conditions," is written.

During rains, drivers must reduce speed considerably and watch out for water ponds that may hide in large holes beneath with the potential of causing extensive damage to the vehicle, or even cause the water to sneak into the engine and stop it, advises the RTA.

"Water ponds accumulated on the road cause the vehicle to slide, and if coupled with high speed on a wet road the vehicle will slide and the driver will lose control of the steering wheel.

When asked when the water level is too high for a vehicle to pass, Al Zafin referred to the best judgment of the driver, adding that within the emirate of Dubai flooded roads would not so easily form.

"There might be some places where water gathers between the road and the pavement, but in general, the roads in Dubai are good," he said.

However, if rainfall is very heavy he recommends motorists not to go out if not needed. "Sometimes someone must use the road. But if it is for leisure, I urge people to stay home for a while until the weather is better."

In case of gusting winds a special warning goes out to cyclers, motor cyclers, and light vehicle users. Heavy winds might cause these road users to shake, especially when speeding buses or trucks overtake. In the worst case, they might be knocked off the road, RTA warns.

Checking the wipers and lights before taking off is a must, are further instructions. While driving it is best to remain silent and concentrate on the road, reduce distractions such as mobile phones and pay attention to warning signs.

"There are always warning signs when weather conditions may affect road safety. These signs may instruct to reduce the speed or turn on the lights," said an RTA spokesperson.

No casualties in Dubai

Although the UAE experienced unstable weather conditions all week, the emirate of Dubai has been relatively spared. No casualties have been reported, confirmed a spokesperson of Dubai Civil Defense.

"We do not have a special plan in place regarding unstable weather conditions. We respond to each accident accordingly. There are no particular places in the emirate that should not be visited, but I advise people to use logic when going somewhere. When there is heavy rainfall, a valley might get flooded."

RAK Police alerts residents to exercise caution

The Police General Headquarters of Ras Al Khaimah has warned residents from venturing into the sea and valleys over the weekend.

Brigadier Ghanem Ahmed Ghanem, Director-General of Central Operations Command, said, the sea will be rough and the weather unstable. He urged residents to exercise caution while driving. He called on people to be wary of going to rugged places.

In case of emergency, people are required to call Ras Al Khaimah Police Operations Room on 999, 998, 0723 56600, and 072 356611.

A young man was caught unawares in the floods while driving in the emirate, causing his death.

A car also sank in the waters, he said.



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