The heatwave has sent ground level temperatures soaring beyond 50 degrees Celsius in Al Ain, the second largest city in the Emirate of Abu Dhabi.
Forecasters said the conditions are not unusual and will continue for the next several days. Humidity, air pollution, dust and sand can worsen conditions in coastal and inland areas.
“These are the harsh conditions in this part of the world demanding a great deal of care from people while outdoors,” said Adel Hassan, a meteorologist in Al Ain.
The heatwave started a day before Ramadan. This is the first time in the past 32 years that people will keep a 15-hour fast in such extreme conditions. “I was about to faint in just five minutes,” said Mushtaq Ali, an Al Ain resident who went out to pick up an office dispatch.
People also posted pictures on social media of car temperature gauges showing outdoor temperatures of 50 and 51 degrees Celsius.
The sun was blazing in Seih Al Salem, around 25km to the south-west of Al Lisaili in Dubai. Here the maximum temperature goes up to 49.9 degrees Celcius in July, but on Tuesday it was 50.5 cegrees Celcius. It means the ground temperature was in the range of 53 degrees Celcius to 54 degrees Celcius.
In cities and towns such as Liwa, Sweihan, Madinat Zayed and Falaj Al Mualla, people described the situation as unbearable. Air-conditioners in vehicles took time to cool.
Forecasters attribute the conditions to the heat cyclones in the Empty Quarter. Heat cyclones are a usual phenomenon in the region in July and August. Winds bring in heat to the UAE and other parts of the Arabian Peninsula.
The bright sun has also increased the ultraviolet radiation. Hassan said maximum UV radiation in the UAE is recorded in the months of July and August and goes down in December. Radiation is the highest at 12pm.
The National Centre of Meteorology and Seismology said the weather will remain hot and hazy all over the country. There will be scattered clouds during the day over the next 48 hours.
Nights will be humid and mornings hazy. Northerly and north-easterly winds will blow at a speed of 20km/h to 30km/h in the morning and night. Wind speeds could reach 42km/h at times, kicking up dust in open inland areas.