x Abu Dhabi, UAEFriday 21 July 2017

Temperatures in UAE drop below freezing

High waves and freezing temperatures have come to the UAE, but sunny skies are expected to return later this week.

The recorded forecast said the skies would remain cloudy until Wednesday, but Thursday was expected to be
The recorded forecast said the skies would remain cloudy until Wednesday, but Thursday was expected to be "mostly sunny".

DUBAI // Temperatures down to freezing and waves up to 18 feet high have battered parts of the UAE for the past three days because of strong northwesterly winds.

These winds were likely to continue to blow both todayand tomorrow, forecasters said yesterday.

Meteorologists recorded a low of -0.2 degrees C on the mountain range of Jebel Jais in Ras al Khaimah at 1.30am yesterday morning.

"This is due to a strong northwesterly wind which has brought cold temperatures to the country and rain," said Majed Al Shekaili, head of the marine forecast section at the National Centre for Meteorology and Seismology.

"This northwesterly wind will remain strong on Monday and on Tuesday morning."

He said that although temperatures had been close to freezing on Sunday morning, there had been no sleet or snow.

"It could happen, if there is rain," he said. "But only if temperatures stay less than 2 degrees C. There's still a chance it could happen before Tuesday morning."

He said that off the coast of Abu Dhabi, waves had reached as high as 10 feet.

"It's not really safe to swim," he said. "It's better to stay out of the sea at this time."

The Dubai Meteorological Office declined to comment, but a recorded forecast from the office said that onshore waves, which had reached as high as 14 to 18 feet, would moderate to 10 to 12 feet on Sunday afternoon.

The recorded forecast said the skies would remain cloudy until Wednesday, but Thursday was expected to be "mostly sunny".

mcroucher@thenational.ae