Severe weather eases across much of UAE but warnings remain in east and north

Heavy rainfall and lightning storms on Saturday caused significant disruption to traffic and flights

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The severe weather engulfing the UAE will begin to subside on Saturday evening, authorities have said.

The worst of the weather will be limited to the east and north of the country on Sunday, according to the National Emergency, Crisis and Disaster Management Authority (NCEMA).

“Rain is currently concentrated on the islands and northern coasts, between heavy and moderate, and it is expected clouds will continue to flow from west to east, accompanied by rainfall,” NCEMA said on X.

“The severity of the situation will gradually decrease starting this evening, Saturday, and will be limited to the east and north of the country on Sunday, ending in the evening.”

Parts of the UAE were inundated by stormy weather on Saturday morning, when torrential rain in some cases forced flight cancellations.

Air travel disruption

Emirates airline said there were flight diversions and delays on Saturday morning caused by heavy rain and stormy conditions in Dubai.

A representative said the airline was working on making sure passengers flew to their destinations as soon as possible.

“Weather in the early morning of March 9 caused delays to some Emirates flights arriving and departing at Dubai International airport, and the diversion of some Emirates flights,” said the representative.

Airline Flydubai told The National that it had cancelled some inbound flights, while diversions and delays were in place for others.

Several flights from other airlines bound for Dubai on Saturday morning were diverted to other airports as bad weather in the emirate continued.

The flights were rerouted to destinations including Zayed International Airport, Al Maktoum International Airport, Muscat International Airport in Oman, and Hamad International Airport in Qatar.

Dubai traffic warnings

Police in Dubai called on motorists to exercise caution when driving in the wet, while all marine transport was temporarily suspended by the city's Roads and Transport Authority (RTA).

Motorists were advised to make sure they took no chances on Dubai's roads, with police issuing a statement on social media to that effect.

“Various areas in Dubai are experiencing moderate to heavy rain,” Dubai Police said on X on Saturday.

“It is of utmost importance for drivers and road users to be extremely cautious while on the roads.”

Torrential rain lashes Dubai

Torrential rain lashes Dubai

Communities across Dubai were also hit by the rain, prompting a flood of coverage on social media channels.

Residents were advised to only leave their homes if necessary given hazardous conditions on the roads.

RTA teams were out across the emirate on Saturday morning to help ease the traffic build-up created by the wet weather.

Elsewhere, most of the country remained under a yellow alert issued by the National Centre of Meteorology (NCM), which was expected to last until at least 4pm on Sunday, March 10.

Abu Dhabi thunderstorms

Thunder and lightning was reported in Abu Dhabi on Saturday afternoon, the NCM said.

The National Centre of Meteorology (NCM) posted on X that there were reports of lightning and thunder over Abu Dhabi island.

The wet conditions in Abu Dhabi followed on from the heavy rain that occurred in Dubai throughout Saturday morning and into the afternoon.

The NCM also issued an alert for those in eastern parts of the country.

“Precautions should be taken in case of heavy rain over some eastern areas and [people are] advised to stay away from areas of flash floods and accumulated rain,” said the NCM on X.

Updated: March 09, 2024, 7:36 PM