Chance of hail and even frost later this week, UAE forecasters warn

Chance of hail and even frost later this week, UAE forecasters warn : An unstable weather system is expected to sweep over the country on Thursday evening

Snow fell on Jebel Jais mountain in Ras al Khaimah in January and December 2017. Courtesy: Mike Charlton

Heavy rain, hailstones and even frost could form over some parts of the UAE later this week, forecasters have warned.
The unusual weather will sweep in as part of an “unstable system” that is expected to form from Thursday evening.
Initially developing to the west of the UAE, the front will move eastwards towards the mountainous northern emirates, eventually spreading over much of the country by the weekend.
In a video posted on National Centre of Meteorology’s (NCM) Twitter page, forecaster Amna Al Zaabi said the unstable spell was expected to last until Monday.
It will result in “different intensities of rainfall, fresh winds, poor horizontal visibility, rough seas and probably some frost formation,” she said.
“The weather is expected to intensify and will gradually extend over most areas of the country on Friday and Saturday.
“Different intensities of rainfall are expected. There is a chance of hail, as well as lightning and thunder at times.”
Winds will be fresh to strong, which would blow dust over exposed areas and result in poor visibility at times, she added. Clouds are likely to gradually decrease by Saturday evening.
“We are also expecting a decrease in temperatures, especially over the mountain highlands [of the northern emirates] and a probability of frost formation," said Ms Al Zaabi. “We urge drivers to be cautious and follow the traffic rules."
Hailstones and frost are highly unusual for the UAE but not unknown on high ground. On Wednesday, the temperature dipped to 2.7C in areas of Ras Al Khaimah.
In 2017, snow fell on Jebel Jais mountain in Ras Al Khaimah twice - in January and again in December - prompting a flood of social media posts of the unusual weather.
Over the weekend, temperatures in Abu Dhabi will reach highs of 21C to 23C, but could dip to 19C on Sunday. They will be similar in Dubai.
The weather system will weaken on Sunday and Monday, leaving cloudy to partly cloudy skies and a chance of rain over coastal, northern and eastern areas.
It is not unusual to see unstable weather in the UAE at this time of the year.
In December, Dubai International Airport experienced delays due to water logging following heavy rain.
And last week, the speed limit was reduced on Sheikh Zayed Road due to dense fog, with visibility at 100 metres in some areas.