Updated at 11:30am on June 12 with more information.
In the coming days, the Qatar Meteorology Department has forecast that temperatures across the country will reach highs between 44C (111F) and 49C (120F) by noontime, the highest the nation has seen during the month of June in almost 52 years.
The rising temperatures have been attributed to the “deepening of the Indian Monsoon” over the Gulf coast.
In a statement, the MET said that 49C weather during this month is relatively unusual:
“Climatologically, the highest temperature recorded during June over the past 52 years is 49 degree Celsius that occurred in Doha in 2010. This extension of the Indian Monsoon Low will also push Northwesterly winds over the coast of Gulf knows as ‘Bawarh.'”
On Twitter, residents in Qatar have been reporting that the “real feel” outdoors is much higher than 49C, with cars logging temperatures of 52C (126F) or more.
In the 20 years I've spent in Qatar – it's never been this hot. It's like an oven out there!
— Ola Diab (@diab_ola) June 10, 2014
— H. M. Al-Sherif (@HamedAlSherif) June 11, 2014
According to Steff Gaulter, senior meteorologist at Al Jazeera English, the last time Qatar officially saw 50C heat was July 14, 2010.
She said cars clock higher-than-actual temperatures because of the heat from the engine and the heat radiating off the roads.
Speaking to Doha News, she added:
“We have strict standards about measuring temperatures. It has to be taken in a standard box, known as a Stevenson Screen, which is 1.25m off the ground, with slated sides to let the air flow through.”
Meanwhile, the midday summer work ban – which limits outdoor working hours for Qatar employees – will still not come into effect until Sunday, June 15.
Though they are not yet legally required to do so, some companies are already keeping their workers indoors during the peak afternoon hours. However, many construction workers could still be seen standing outdoors this week in the furnace-like conditions.
— SeeMyCulture (@seemyculture) June 10, 2014
The upside is that forecasters are also warning of increasing wind speeds toward the end of the week. According to Weather.com, this will cause temperatures to drop to a cool 41C (106F) by the weekend.
However, high wind speeds also mean decreasing visibility due to dusty conditions. The MET has asked residents are asked to take “adequate precautions,” presumably meaning to stay indoors during the hottest afternoon hours and observe measures protect oneself against swirling dust.