x Abu Dhabi, UAESunday 23 July 2017

New UAE weather warning as woman is swept away to her death in Dubai

The as-yet-unidentified female climbed over a cement barrier and stood on water breakers in front of the Rixos Hotel to take photographs.

Waves lash Jumeirah Open Beach in Dubai on Friday, a woman was swept away as she tried to photograph a similar scene at The Palm the same day. Satish Kumar / The National
Waves lash Jumeirah Open Beach in Dubai on Friday, a woman was swept away as she tried to photograph a similar scene at The Palm the same day. Satish Kumar / The National
DUBAI // A woman was swept to her death by high seas while taking photos of a storm lashing the Palm Jumeirah.
The woman, thought to have been in her twenties, climbed over a cement barrier and stood on water breakers in front of the Rixos Hotel on the Eastern Crescent to take photos at the height of the storm on Friday.
Rescue teams found her body shortly after she was swept away at 5.30pm.
Police working to identify the dead woman visited the Rixos later on Friday. "We checked the guest lists and everyone was accounted for," said Zubair Abdulrahman, a hotel security guard.
The tragedy added urgency to warnings of high winds and waves in the next few days. Spectators were urged to heed warning signs and remain behind barriers meant to protect from surges.
Conditions in the Arabian Gulf on Friday were particularly rough as 65kph winds whipped up huge waves that battered the shoreline.
The winds and high tides caused flooding at many parts of the beach at JBR as rough seas persisted for most of the day.
Strong winds of up to 60kph are expected to batter the coast today, creating rough conditions at sea.
Light rain is also forecast over parts of the country this morning, with the cooler, wintry conditions of the past few days expected to remain until the end of the week at least.
Temperatures are expected to drop as low as 5°C in interior and mountainous areas tonight, with daytime coastal temperatures set to peak at 22°C.
There will be an increase in cloud cover, particularly in the western parts of the country, today and that will maintain the lower temperatures experienced in the last few days, a forecaster at the National Centre for Meteorology and Seismology in Abu Dhabi said.
"There is also a chance for dust and sand to be picked up by the wind so it may result in overcast conditions."
The winter weather system is being influenced by the convergence of a front of low pressure moving from Iran and high pressure coming from Saudi Arabia over the Gulf.
"This is causing the north-westerly wind to accelerate," the forecaster said.
"We expect the temperatures to remain about the same over the next three days.
"This type of unsettled weather is normal for this time of year."
tsubaihi@thenational.ae
wissa@thenational.ae
nhanif@thenational.ae
For the Dubai weather forecast for the next five days click here