DOHA: The strong dust winds lashing the country over the past two days are expected to continue until this afternoon, according to the Meteorology Department.
As the winds subside, temperature would start rising again, reaching a maximum of 40 degrees Celsius during peak hours of the day, about three degrees higher compared to yesterday.
The maximum temperature recorded in Doha yesterday was 37 degrees C, according to the department.
Northwesterly winds would change direction to northeasterly by this afternoon, blowing at speeds ranging from five to 15-20 knots.
Meanwhile, the dust storm caused a sudden increase in the number of people, especially children, seeking treatment for respiratory illnesses over the past two days.
The Paediatric Emergency at Wakra Hospital received about 380 cases on the two days, nearly 100 more compared to other days.
Normally, the section receives 250 to 300 children on average every day, a local Arabic daily reported yesterday.
The cases almost doubled at the general emergency of the hospital, reaching 75 against the daily average of 30 to 35.
Majority of the patients were discharged after giving first aid, said the daily, quoting a source at the hospital. Asthma patients would take more time to return to normalcy.
The Paediatric Emergency in Al Sadd, however, has not reported any noticeable increase in the cases following the dust winds, according to the daily.
The emergency receives an average 1,000 cases daily and there was no significant change in the number over the past two days.
Experts have warned against exposing children and asthma patients to the bad weather.
People have been advised to wash their face, eyes and nostrils frequently as a precaution against tiny dust particles entering the body. The Peninsula