KuwaitOther News

Heavy dust storm hits Kuwait; schools, air traffic not affected

Low horizontal visibility dropped to 1,000 meters in some areas

KUWAIT: Kuwait was affected by a heavy dust storm yesterday caused by strong south and northwestern winds with speeds ranging between 20 and 55 kilometers per hour, lead meteorologist at the Directorate General of Civil Aviation’s (DGCA) Meteorological Department Abdulaziz Al-Qarawi said. The dust storm caused low horizontal visibility reaching 1,000 meters in some areas.

Air traffic at Kuwait International Airport was normal despite the dust storm, as flights to and from the airport were not affected, Assistant Director of DGCA Khaled Al-Shuaibi said. He pointed out that visibility level permitted takeoffs and landings in compliancy with the airport standards.

Meanwhile, schools continued to operate while only students and schools staff with medical conditions exempted from completing the day, said an official at the Ministry of Education. Education Ministry’s Undersecretary Dr Haitham Al-Athari said that outdoor activities at schools were suspended.

“Though the country is experiencing a dust storm, the current weather condition did not necessitate schools’ closure,” said the official, adding that schools headmasters and educational areas throughout the country have the authority to assess the situation and take a decision to end the school day if necessary.

In the meantime, the Interior Ministry advised road users to take extra precaution during the dust storm. The ministry’s public relations department said that low visibility might result in traffic accidents, indicating that drivers should take care and help protect themselves and others while on the road. Furthermore, Kuwait Fire Service Directorate (KFSD) warned against the unstable weather conditions in the country, urging sea-goers and desert campers to take extra precaution. – KUNA

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