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Videos: Heavy rain hits Dubai, flooding in parts of UAE

Ahmed Shaaban and Anjana Sankar/Abu Dhabi
Filed on December 17, 2017 | Last updated on December 17, 2017 at 01.37 pm



Picture by Neeraj Murali

NCM has predicted unstable weather across the UAE, with chances of rain and thunderstorms

Heavy rains hit Dubai, Al Ain, Fujairah, Ras Al Khaimah and some other parts of UAE on Sunday, flooding streets in Kalba areas.

The weather department has sounded the alarm and asked residents to be cautious while out near the sea. "It is not advisable to go swimming or venture out to the mountains till Monday.

The weather conditions are very unstable and we are closely monitoring the situation," said a forecaster.

According to the NCMS, it will be increasingly cloudy over most areas of the country, with more convective clouds, associated with rainfall of different intensity at scattered places. Moderate to fresh winds will blow, which may cause rising dust.

The centre also warned of rough to very rough sea in the Arabian Gulf and Oman Sea during this period.

Taking into account the looming rains and storm, the General Directorate of Abu Dhabi Police said it has stepped up its preparations for emergency situations due to the expected weather fluctuations.

The Abu Dhabi Police confirmed its readiness to receive all emergency calls to its control centres in Abu Dhabi, Al Dhafra and Al Ain, in normal or exceptional circumstances.

The National Emergency Crisis and Disaster Management Authority said it is liaising with all concerned authorities, including police and municipalities, to manage the situation. The authority also has put in place an action plan for evacuation of residents and aid supply, in case of a crisis.

anjana@khaleejtimes.com

----

Weather is playing spoilsport this weekend as many residents are putting off their outing plans as storm and rain alert looms.

The National Center of Meteorology (NCM) has predicted unstable weather across the UAE, with chances of rain and thunderstorms, between December 15 and 18.

Many families said they are heeding to the forecast, and called off picnics and off road adventures.

"My family is on visit from India and we were planning to go for a desert drive on Saturday. We cancelled it thinking the weather will be too dangerous to venture out," said Abdul Rahman, an Abu Dhabi resident.

Shamma Hussain and her friends were all set for a hiking adventure at Jabal Jais mountain in Ras Al Khaimah on Saturday, but the weather alert ruined their plans as well.

"We are a group of eight friends and we have been planning this trip for a while. But after reading about the unstable weather reports, we had no choice but to cancel the plan. Ras Al Khaimah could get pounded by heavy rains, and we thought it is not worth taking a chance," said Hussain, a university student from Jordan.

Corporate events and birthday parties have also taken a hit due to the stormy weather. "We are seriously concerned about the weather forecast as we are hosting an outdoor party for more than 600 clients in Dubai on Sunday," an official from a private bank said. "We are thinking of calling it off. You are talking about a few hundred thousand dirhams down the drain," said the bank official.

Hailstorm blankets parts of RAK

Meanwhile, heavy rain and thunderstorm lashed parts of the UAE on Saturday. NCM reported heavy rain over Jais mountain and in WAM city in Dibba, Al Fujairah. There was also heavy showers in parts of Ras Al Khaimah with police warning motorists to drive safe.

His Highness Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai, also shared a video of the hail covered desert in RAK and a breathtaking photo:

The weather department has sounded off the alarm and asked residents to be cautious while out near the sea. "It is not advisable to go swimming or venture out to the mountains till Monday. The weather conditions are very unstable and we are closely monitoring the situation," said a forecaster.

According to NCM, clouds will increase over most areas of the country, some becoming convective clouds, associated with rain fall of different intensity at scattered places.

Moderate to fresh winds will blow over land which may cause rising dust. The sea will be rough to very rough at times, especially with clouds activity in the Arabia Gulf and the Oman Sea.

Weather forecast point to towering clouds formation associated with rainfall, fresh wind and rough sea in the Arabian Gulf and Oman Sea. Reported wind speeds in the Arabian Gulf are at 35 - 45 km/hr, reaching 45 - 55km/hr in case of cloud activity. Wave heights range from four to six feet, reaching six to nine feet in case of cloud activity, the NCM said.

Taking into account the looming rains and storm, the General Directorate of Abu Dhabi Police (ADP) said it has stepped up its preparations for emergency situations due to the expected weather fluctuations.

Abu Dhabi Police confirmed its readiness to receive all emergency calls to its control centers in Abu Dhabi, Al Dhafra and Al Ain in normal or exceptional circumstances.

The National Emergency Crisis and Disaster Management Authority (NCEMA) said it is liaising with all concerned authorities, including police and municipalities, to manage the situation. The authority also has put in place an action plan for evacuation of residents and aid supply, in case of a crisis.

The Abu Dhabi municipality has set up an emergency what's app number (0569939930) for residents to reach out to the civic authorities for help.

While call centres are also ready to receive calls at 993, water tanks and pumps are also kept ready for emergency response in case of water logging.

Patrols increased in RAK

Moderate showers have lashed different parts of the emirate of Ras Al Khaimah, particularly in the northern and mountainous areas on Saturday.
 
The rainwater has covered all internal roads and highways of the northern emirate, mainly the Wakalah road and the Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed road, let alone the deep valleys and high mountains here.
 
Mohammed Ibrahim, an Emirati citizen, told Khaleej Times that he was so happy to enjoy the moderate showers on the Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed road in the direction of Ras Al Khaimah.

"More and heavier showers are expected as the sky is filled with dark and massive clouds on almost all part of the emirate."

All parts of Shamal, Rams, Ghalila, and Azan were hit with rain, he added. "The internal roads and highways of Masafi are covered with rainwater, and it's so nice for young children to go out and enjoy the fine weather."

The RAK police have, meanwhile, deployed more patrols to ensure traffic flow.
 
"All motorists need to be alert, focus and careful, and reduce speed on the road during the rain. Seafarers, beach and valleys goers, and motorists are still urged to be more cautious during the unstable weather," according to police sources.
 
Residents of the areas much exposed to pouring showers and strong winds, are requested to be careful, and immediately call (999) in case of emergency, they urged.
 
"All residents are advised to avoid mountainous areas, and the strong currents of the valleys here, while all motorists are requested to reduce speed, be attentive on the road, turn on the light, and observe traffic rules for road users' safety and theirs."
 
The RAK department of public works and services has also deployed several tankers to suck out any accumulated ponds of rainwater, particularly at the low level areas and major roads.

Rain in Dubai

Towards the evening, moderate to heavy rain hit parts of Dubai and Sharjah:

anjana@khaleejtimes.com   

ahmedshaaban@khaleejtimes.com

(With inputs from Web Desk)


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