Why rain in Dubai is such a big deal
- Despite the start of summer, Dubai is still seeing rain, thunder and lightning
- Unlike other cities, rain in Dubai can cause major traffic incidents and other disturbances
- Dubai has seen record-levels of rain this year
- The UAE has said its cloud-seeding efforts are responsible for this year’s additional downpours
“Another rainy day”, is a phrase not often heard in the UAE – let alone Dubai.
But so far this year residents have said it more than a dozen times. That’s unusual for a city known for 356 days of sun, sea and sand.
As many people who live in the United Arab Emirates will know, residents and tourists alike are virtually guaranteed their stay will include some nice sunny weather. Not so of the first few months of 2019, which has seen more than the odd rainy day.
WATCH - Why Rain in Dubai is such a big deal
It’s a common joke that Dubai has two seasons – the hot season and the very hot season. That is somewhat true. From September to March the weather is generally very nice, and then after that during the summer it gets quite a bit hotter.
But right now we are in the period of time between those seasons, a time where the weather can get a bit interesting.
That’s when Dubai gets wet, windy, and stormy. It’s also when you can expect sandstorms, or as they’re called here – shamals.
For people who live in places like Europe, the US or Asia, you’re probably thinking to yourself, “hey, that’s just a bit of rain. What’s all the fuss about?” But in a desert city like Dubai, rain can be quite a big deal.
Why? Because Dubai as a city has been expanding exponentially over the last thirty years. What used to be a small, sleepy fishing village is now one of the largest economic hubs in the Middle East. The population has ramped up massively, and so then has construction.
Infrastructure is now built all along the coast of the city, and now into the desert. But when you are building roads in a city that never rains, there’s one really easy concession to make – drains.
Fortunately, it doesn’t rain all that often here in Dubai. And while the odd shower – like the ones all this month – is a tad unexpected, it’s only a matter of time until the city will be back in glorious sunshine.
And that will probably last the next six months.