Message for U.S. Citizens: Riyadh (Saudi Arabia), Predicted Serious Weather

This message is being sent out in response to reports of potentially serious weather across Saudi Arabia this week. Heavy rainfall, high winds and rough seas may strike various areas across the country.

The national weather authority in Saudi Arabia, the Presidency of Meteorology and Environmental Protection, has predicted that weather conditions characterized by heavy rains are expected across several cities and regions, including Tabuk, Al-Jouf, Riyadh, Hail, Makkah, Madinah, Al Qassim, Al Baha, Asir, the Eastern Province, and the Northern Border Region.

Rain is expected to begin Wednesday, November 23 or Thursday, November 24, and may continue through Friday, November 25. Rainfall can lead to flooding and create dangerous situations that have resulted in casualties in the past.

High winds may also carry dust, limiting visibility in affected regions. Travel by car may be unsafe in such an event, and flights may be cancelled.

All Americans are urged to use this warning as an opportunity to assess their emergency preparedness. Prepare for inclement weather by organizing a kit in a waterproof container that includes a supply of bottled water, non-perishable food items, a battery-powered or hand-crank radio, any medications taken regularly, and vital documents (especially your passport and other identification). Emergency shelters often provide only very basic resources and may have limited medical and food supplies. NOAA and the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) have additional tips on their websites.

Conditions and weather patterns may change quickly. Monitor radio, other local media, and online weather information services to be aware of weather developments. Inform family and friends of your whereabouts and remain in close contact with your employer, tour operator, hotel staff, transportation providers, and local officials for evacuation instructions during a weather emergency.

We strongly encourage U.S. citizens to enroll with the nearest U.S. embassy or consulate through the U.S. Department of State's Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP). By enrolling, you will receive the most recent security and safety updates during your trip. Enrollment also ensures that you can be reached during an emergency. While we will do our utmost to assist you in a crisis, be aware that local authorities bear primary responsibility for the welfare of people living or traveling in their jurisdictions.

Source: Overseas Security Advisory Council