Dubai: Police issued a weather alert to motorists on Tuesday after unpredictable conditions led road visibility to fall below 1,000 metres.
“Motorists are being urged to drive carefully due to decreased visibility caused by bad weather conditions, particularly in external areas,” said Dubai Police.
Dust clouds and heavy winds affected various parts of the country as a thunderstorm is expected to hit the UAE later in the day, especially in the northern and eastern parts of the country.
The National Centre of Meteorology (NCM) said an extension of the surface Red Sea trough over the country and over east and southward of the Arabian Peninsula, accompanied with an extension of upper air trough, is affecting the country.
Rainfall was reported over the Al Dhafra region in Abu Dhabi, where footage of the showers were uploaded on the storm monitoring station @storm_ae across social networking sites.
Weather forecasters at the NCM said the skies will be cloudy in general, with rainfall of different intensities over scattered areas “associated with thunder activity at times, especially northward and eastward”. The amount of clouds will gradually decline by the afternoon.
Moderate to strong northwesterly winds, especially over the sea, will cause dust and sand to blow over exposed areas, with a significant decrease in temperatures.
Abu Dhabi Police have warned motorists that taking photographs of rain while driving is a traffic violation and will be penalised with a Dh800 fine and four black points.
According to Article 32 of the Federal Traffic Law, the use of a mobile phone is categorised under distracted driving.
Statistics by the Roads and Transport Authority (RTA) in Dubai revealed that texting while driving increases your chance of being in a traffic accident by as much as 32 per cent.
The reaction time for drivers using a mobile phone was reduced by 50 per cent, according to the RTA, while around 10 per cent of your driving is done outside the lane.
According to the NCM, temperatures dropped to 16 °C in Umm Al Quwain and Sharjah, while reaching 19 °C in Dubai and Ajman in the early morning.
In its weather bulletin, the NCM recorded the coldest temperature at Jebel Jais, which reached 8.4 °C. The top five coldest places in the country also included Jebel Mebreh, Jebel Hafeet, Jebel Al Heben and Al FarFar with temperatures of 10.4 °C, 12.8 °C, 13.8 °C and 15.6 °C respectively.
The sea will be rough to very rough at times in the Arabian Gulf and rough in Oman Sea.
During the next two days, the weather is expected to become more stable with cloudy skies and moderate winds on Wednesday before temperatures slightly increase by Thursday and into Friday.