UAE weather: Dubai airport back to normal after cancelled flights

Etihad also declares business as usual for operations in Abu Dhabi

A hazy morning along the Eastern Mangroves Road in Abu Dhabi. Victor Besa / The National
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Dubai International Airport is returning to normal after sandstorms led to two days of disruption, the cancellation of 44 flights and 12 diversions.

Passengers planning to fly from the UAE this week are being urged to monitor schedules for any more potential disruption caused by poor weather and visibility.

Operations were largely unaffected at Dubai International on Monday morning, despite blowing sand and dust blanketing much of the city and visibility falling to only 500 metres in some areas.

Several flights from Dubai were delayed by about 50 minutes on Monday morning but disruption caused by the weather was kept to a minimum.

“Dubai Airports can confirm that operations at Dubai International (DXB) are currently recovering to normal following the extensive weather delays in the region over the past two days,” an airport representative said.

“Between Sunday afternoon and the early hours of Monday, a total of 44 flights were cancelled while 12 flights that were diverted to Dubai World Central (DWC) and other neighbouring airports have since returned back to DXB or their respective base.

“There have been no weather-related flight cancellations or diversions since.

“We are working closely with airlines and other service partners to restore normal operations at the earliest and to ensure that inconvenience to our customers is minimised.

“We urge all customers to check directly with their airlines to obtain the latest information on the status of their flights.”

The National Centre for Meteorology issued a warning on Monday morning about poor weather conditions around Abu Dhabi International, Al Bateen and Al Maktoum International airports because of blowing and suspended dust leading to horizontal visibility being reduced to only 1,000m.

Emirates and Flydubai urged passengers to check their websites before heading to the airport in case of delays or cancellations.

“Due to the adverse weather in Dubai some of our flights are delayed or have been cancelled,” a statement said on Flydubai’s Facebook page.

“Before you set off for the airport, please check the status of your flight on the website.

“If your flight has been cancelled, you can contact your travel agent or visit the manage booking section on to rebook on another flydubai flight or to arrange a refund.

“Please allow extra time for your journey to the airport."

Thick clouds of dust cover UAE skylines

Thick clouds of dust cover UAE skylines

Emirates said passengers should make sure their contact details with the airline are up to date to receive the latest information.

“Sandstorms and heavy dust in Dubai may cause disruption to some Emirates flights arriving and departing at Dubai International on August 15,” said an Emirates representative.

“Emirates urges customers to check their flight status on the website for the latest information regarding their flights and to ensure their contact details are updated on via the “manage my booking” tab to receive notifications.

“Emirates apologises for any inconvenience caused. The safety of our passengers and crew is of utmost importance and will not be compromised.”

Normal operations in Abu Dhabi

Meanwhile, Etihad Airways' flight operations in Abu Dhabi continued as normal with no disruption to schedules reported as a result of the weather.

“Etihad Airways flights are currently operating as scheduled and have not experienced any delays or disruptions as a result of the adverse weather in Abu Dhabi,” the airline said.

“Our teams are continuing to closely monitor the weather conditions.

“As always, the safety of our guests and crew is our highest priority.”

A low-pressure weather system with the potential to bring heavy rain and a repeat of the flash floods that affected Fujairah and the Northern Emirates late last month appears to be weakening.

Rain was most likely to fall in the east and south of the UAE by mid-afternoon, the NMC said.

Dusty conditions will continue for the coming days, with winds of up to 40kph expected in parts.

Rain is also expected to cause a drop in temperatures in the second part of the week.

Updated: August 15, 2022, 11:36 AM