Video: Brace for more thunder, rain in UAE today
A pedestrian walks past waterlogged street in Al Qouz 1 after a downpour in Dubai on Sunday. - Photo by Neeraj Murali
Dubai/Ras Al Khaimah - Despite the warnings and flooding, residents expressed delight at the heavy rains and stormy weather
Moderate to heavy rainfall has been reported from some parts of the UAE on Monday morning. According to the National Center of Meteorology and Seismology (NCM), has shared a notification about heavy rain in Al Alfaqeet area and Dibba area .
The weather department has predicted unstable weather conditions in UAE today. There is a possibility of rainfall of different intensity at various places in the country.
In a statement on Monday, NCM said that the intensity of instability conditions will gradually decrease by evening.
The amount of clouds will gradually decrease, with a chance of some rainfall, especially over the northern and the eastern areas of the country, it added
Moderate to fresh winds in general, causing rising dust, especially with cloud activity. The relative humidity will increase during night and early morning times over some coastal and internal areas, with a probability of fog/mist formation.
Sea will be rough in The Arabian Gulf and Oman Sea, and very rough at times with clouds activity.
A watershed day for UAE
Sunday proved to be a very wet day across the country, as heavy rains lashed almost all of the seven emirates.
Hail and snow also hit some parts of the country, even as many residents took to social media to document the unusual wintry weather in the desert.
The wet, windy and stormy conditions have been ongoing across the UAE since Friday, and according to the National Centre of Meteorology (NCM), it is likely to continue well into Monday.
As social media feeds were chockablock with images and videos documenting the heavy rain on Sunday, one Instagram video posted by @binmejren_sultan showed clouds flowing down like a river onto the desert area in Ras Al Khaimah.
The UAE's @Storm_Center also shared some breathtaking videos and images of the weather including one piece of footage dubbed 'purple storm', showing spectacular lightning in RAK, which appeared to tint the skies purple.
On Sunday, an NCM representative said convective clouds accompanied by occasional heavy rain and lightning was expected throughout the day and night on Sunday. But that weather is expected to gradually subside by Monday afternoon. However, rain will remain over scattered areas. "Southeasterly to northeasterly moderate to fresh winds will, at times cause blowing dust and sand, and will reach a speed of 65 km/hour," NCM said.
The centre also warned of rough- to very rough waters in the Arabian Gulf and Oman Sea during this period.
Despite the warnings and flooding in many residential areas, some residents expressed unexpected delight at the heavy rains and stormy weather, some of the first witnessed in December. For Twitter user @hameedshock, it was the respite from the usually hot weather here.
"#Dubai gets rain after a long wait! #joy #currentmood #weather #rain #UAE", he tweeted. And @MHuzayen joined him by tweeting "#dubai #rain #bussinessbay #amazing @BusinessBay."
But while many enjoyed the weather, it brought chaos for others, especially motorists. Building management teams as well as police authorities sent out warnings via circulars and social media to residents, urging them to take precautions in the wet conditions.
"Dear drivers: Reduce speed during heavy rain to avoid any hydroplaning #Weather#DubaiPolice," the Dubai Police tweeted. The Sharjah Police announced the closure of several roads leading to the valleys, as heavy rain continued to lash parts of the emirate on Sunday.
But RAK seemed to be the most hit, as the constant downpour turned mountains and valleys into enormous, deep lakes. Several roads also reports landslides, mainly the Al Tawain area.
Work to clear accumulated waterThe RAK department of Public Works and Services has also deployed over 80 tankers to suck out accumulated ponds of rainwater, particularly in the low level areas and major roads. Ahmed Mohammed Al Hammadi, director of the department, said 30 of these tankers belong to the department while 50 others have been rented.
The RAK Police have also deployed more traffic patrols to ensure traffic flow and recover stuck and non-functioning vehicles, if any, according to Marwan Jakkah, RAK Police's media department head.
Residents of areas exposed to pouring showers and strong winds are requested to be careful, and call 999 in case of emergency immediately.
"All residents are advised to avoid mountainous areas and the strong currents of the valleys here, while motorists are requested to reduce speed, be attentive on the road, turn on the lights, and observe traffic rules for everybody's safety."
Contingency plan in place to meet rain emergenciesDr Abdullah bin Mohammed Belhaif Al Nuaimi, Minister of Infrastructure Development, has said that the ministry has a comprehensive plan in place to prepare for the rainy season, following a specialised study to determine the causes of landslides and flooding.
This includes the design and building of a system to manage rainwater drainage at Exits 103, 110, 119 and 129 on Sheikh Mohamed Bin Zayed Road in Dubai.
The ministry had previously coordinated with the local governments, forming working teams of engineers to prepare for urgent incidents during the rainy season.
The teams are also responsible for repairing damage, managing traffic and overcoming problems caused by rainwater, ensuring the safety of lives and property.
Dr Al Nuaimi said that the ministry is considering the implementation of a rainwater drainage system in regions that have previously suffered from flooding. Practical solutions will be adopted to prevent a recurrence of this problem.
(With inputs from Wam, Ahamed Shabaan)