Dubai: Unstable weather condition is expected to persist across the country until Saturday, according to forecast by the National Centre of Meteorology (NCM), and authorities have reminded the public to exercise caution.
On Thursday, residents woke up to rainfall and strong winds as some roads in Dubai and other emirates were closed due to flooding. The public was also strongly advised against going near valleys and wadis to avoid being caught in flash floods. Schools and theme parks were closed, and several events were likewise cancelled.
Emergency response mechanism
Dubai Municipality said it intensified efforts to deal with rainwater accumulation by activating the emergency response mechanism which works round the clock. Various precautionary measures have been taken, supported by an advanced system of rainwater drainage networks, to minimise the impact, the civic body said.
Dubai Police received a total of 16,610 calls in a span of 24 hours, between 12pm on Wednesday and Thursday 12pm. Lieutenant Colonel Bilal Al Tayer, acting director of the Command and Control Centre, assured the public of the Dubai Police’s “readiness to handle any situation.” He also urged the public to call 999 in emergencies only and 901 for non-emergency inquiries.
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Warning for beachgoers, hikers
Dubai Police advised beachgoers to take necessary safety precautions during unstable weather conditions. “As long as the red flag is erected at the beach, it is not allowed to swim or enter the water,” Dr Colonel Hassan Suhail Al Suwaidi, director of the Ports Police Station, noted.
Dubai Police also advised owners of boats, ships, yachts, and the public to refrain from going to sea, in light of the current weather fluctuations.
Colonel Mubarak bin Mubarak Al Ketbi, director of the Hatta Police Station, called on motorists to stay away from waterways. He also urged hikers to avoid trekking in the mountains during the rainy season.
Advisory in Abu Dhabi
The Capital has been drenched with showers since early Thursday morning. Abu Dhabi Emergencies, Crises and Disasters Management Centre (ADECDM) advised residents to stay abreast of the latest weather forecast and to stay away from valleys, beaches and ponds. The authority also urged motorists to adhere to the amended speed limits indicated on traffic signage, and recommended that residents have first aid kits, and flashlights and candles, at hand in case of necessity.
Home-owners were advised to secure all loose materials so that they will not be blown away by strong winds, and to perform routine maintenance on electrical equipment, connections and fittings.
Children in the emirate attended school as usual, but traffic was heavier than usual during the morning and afternoon peak hours as motorists cautiously plied their routes.
School administrations in Sharjah and the Eastern Region decided to cancel physical school sessions during the week, while government schools in Kalba ended the school day early due to unstable weather and the rains.
Schools in Sharjah will remain closed until Friday, and classes will only be conducted online in Fujairah and Ras Al Khaimah. The Ajman Ministry of Education, meanwhile, left decision to schools administration to decide whether to conduct face-to-face classes or remote learning.
Moderate to heavy rains fell on multiple areas, including Qidfa, Wadi Mai and Dhadna in Fujairah, Fujairah International Airport, as well as Khorfakkan, Dibba Al Hisn and Kalba Corniche in Sharjah.
Traffic patrols were deployed to ensure road safety and motorists were told to follow the changing speed limits as shown on electronic traffic and guiding signs.
Friday’s weather is expected to be cloudy in general, with rainfall in coastal, northern and eastern areas. The sea will be rough in the Arabian Gulf and moderate in Oman sea
Saturday will again be cloudy in general and cloudy at times over some northern and eastern areas with a chance of rainfall during daytime. It will be humid by night until Sunday morning over some internal areas, with a probability of mist formation.
Sunny weather condition will prevail on Sunday as it will be partly cloudy in Northern and Eastern areas. Next week will also have a sunny start as Monday’s weather is expected to be fair in general.