UAE weather: Private schools to work remotely due to expected storms

Unstable conditions with thunder, lightning and winds of up to 70kph in some areas set to persist until Wednesday

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Schools across the Emirates will be closed on Tuesday when thunderstorms and downpours hit much of the country.

Pupils will study from home in online classes, in a model set up during the coronavirus pandemic.

In Dubai, government employees will work from home on Tuesday, with some other public sector departments around the country expected to do the same.

Nationwide, government school pupils will study from home until Thursday. Sharjah announced the same for private schools. In Dubai and Abu Dhabi, private schools will be closed on Tuesday.

The National Centre of Meteorology said adverse conditions would begin on Monday evening.

High winds of up to 70kph are forecast to last until Wednesday, with motorists urged to stay off the roads.

The centre's weather chart showed intense storms hitting Abu Dhabi and Dubai's coastlines throughout Tuesday.

Conditions should ease by Wednesday mid morning.

Safety measures

The UAE's Ministry of Interior called on people to exercise caution during the hazardous weather.

Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed, Crown Prince of Dubai, said "all Dubai Government entities and private schools to work remotely on Tuesday, April 16".

Gems Education, the largest operator of private schools in the country, said: "As ever, our priority is the safety of our entire school community and moving to remote learning is the most responsible course of action given these exceptional circumstances."

Authorities in Ras Al Khaimah said public schools will work online on Tuesday and Wednesday, while parks and beaches will be closed.

Public and private schools in Umm Al Quwain will operate remotely as well, authorities said.

It is up to private sector companies to decide whether employees should work from home, but the Ministry of Human Resources and Emiratisation urged anyone with outdoor workers to take the utmost care.

"We advise private sector companies to take all necessary precautions and make sure that occupational health and safety requirements are met to ensure the safety of their workers during the expected period of weather fluctuations,” a statement read.

Remote working for all government employees, with the exception of those whose presence in the workplace is necessary, was announced on Monday night by the state news agency Wam.

How severe is the storm?

The forecast comes after adverse conditions elsewhere in the region. In Oman, at least 14 people died and several others were reported missing after Sunday's heavy rain.

The geographical nature of Oman will influence the severity of the weather system in the UAE, said Dr Ahmed Habib of the NCM.

“The first wave of the weather condition will see the formation of cumulus clouds in the southern and coastal areas by this evening, increasing in intensity before spreading to major cities in Abu Dhabi, followed by Dubai and the Northern Emirates, bringing varied intensities of rain, most of which will be heavy, accompanied by lightning, thunder, and possibly hail,” he told The National.

“The second wave of the low-pressure system will begin around noon on Tuesday, with the rain becoming heavier in Al Dhafra, then moving towards Abu Dhabi during the late hours and extending towards Dubai and the Northern Emirates, continuing until Wednesday morning before it starts to recede in the afternoon.”

He cautioned that visibility levels had already decreased, accompanied by strong winds, with visibility in the western region of Abu Dhabi currently reduced to 1,000 metres.

“The sea will also be rough to very rough,” warned Dr Habib, advising the community to avoid valleys in Ras Al Khaimah and Fujairah, where water flow can be turbulent.

Below is a breakdown of the five-day weather forecast for the UAE.


Unstable weather, accompanied by convective clouds with rainfall of different intensities over scattered areas, has been forecast by the NCM. Temperatures are expected to peak at 34°C, with lows of 23°C.

Moderate to fresh winds are expected to stir up dust and sand, reducing visibility.

The sea will be moderate, becoming rough to very rough with clouds in the Arabian Gulf and slight to moderate in the Oman Sea.


Unstable weather is forecast to continue on Tuesday, the NCM said, with rainfall expected across most of the country. Temperatures are also set to drop, with highs of 28°C and lows of 21°C.

High winds are expected with speeds reaching 70kph.

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


The unstable weather is expected to ease by Wednesday, with partly cloudy conditions and light rainfall forecast in some northern and eastern areas. Temperatures are expected to peak at 27°C, with lows of 19°C.

Winds are set to be light to moderate, with maximum speeds reaching 40kph.

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


Fair conditions are forecast for Thursday, with reduced cloud cover and high temperatures of 28°C with lows of 18°C.

Winds are set to be light to moderate, with maximum speeds reaching 40kph.

Conditions will be moderate to slight in the Oman Sea.


Friday is expected to be sunny with a gentle breeze. Temperatures will reach highs of 29°C and lows of 18°C, with high humidity forecast at night.

Winds are set to be light to moderate, with maximum speeds reaching 30kph.

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Updated: May 08, 2024, 8:36 AM