Dubai Faces Flight Cancellations Amid Heavy Rainfall

The downpour occurred weeks after Dubai endured unprecedented storms, bringing daily activities to a sudden halt
Dense clouds envelope Dubai's sky
Dense clouds envelope Dubai's skyBu Abdul Rahman / Shutterstock

On May 2, heavy rains and thunderstorms struck the U.A.E., cancelling numerous international flights. This event occurred two weeks after Dubai endured unprecedented storms, paralysing the emirate for days.

Before the onset of the recent weather conditions, on May 1, the National Emergency Crisis and Disaster Management Authority (NCEMA) raised the readiness and preparedness levels of the national system. Although these rains were forecasted to be less severe than the previous downpour, precautions were strongly advised for the public.

The extreme rainfall that battered parts of the Arabian Peninsula, particularly Dubai, from April 14-15 marked the heaviest recorded rains since 1949.

Dubai-based Emirates airline was compelled to cancel several flights on May 2 due to adverse weather conditions across the U.A.E. Operations at Dubai International Airport (D.X.B.) were significantly impacted, resulting in flight delays and rescheduling. Notably, Emirates waived rebooking charges to assist affected passengers.

A submerged street in Dubai after the April downpour
A submerged street in Dubai after the April downpourMDXB / Shutterstock.

In response to the inclement weather, residents were advised to employ remote work systems, except for essential personnel required for onsite tasks and emergency response efforts. The Ministry of Interior, in collaboration with NCEMA, took measures to close roads leading to flood-prone areas, urging the public to prioritise safety and adhere to guidelines.

Weather forecasts warned of moderate to heavy rain, lightning, thunder, and the possibility of small hail, particularly in western, coastal, and certain eastern regions.

On May 1, flight disruptions and event postponements were reported due to adverse weather conditions. Etihad Airways diverted its Mumbai to Abu Dhabi flight (EY197) to Al-Ain due to unfavourable conditions in Abu Dhabi, causing a significant delay in arrival.

In Dubai, the Ports, Customs, and Free Zone Corporation (PCFC) temporarily suspended the acceptance of requests for the entry and departure of wooden dhows, emphasising safety precautions for sailors amidst turbulent weather conditions. As the city braced for the impending storms, residents exhibited a heightened sense of assurance and preparedness.

(With inputs from PTI)

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