Heavy rains continued across Saudi Arabia, bringing severe downpours in the western and northwestern areas where floods killed at least 12 people and 271 people had to be rescued by authorities, according to Al Jazeera.

The kingdom was hit with floods and sandstorms from the inclement weather, which led to school closures due to poor visibility on Monday.

Authorities called on people to take precautions when leaving their homes during the bad weather.

Heavy amounts of rain fell in northern and western portions of Saudi Arabia through Monday, with closures hitting the areas in Tabuk, Arar, and Al-Jouf due to flooding.

"Riyadh, Makkah, the northern border region, Hail, Tabuk, Qassim, Madinah, the eastern province, Asir, Jazan and Al-Jouf are experiencing unstable weather and the General Directorate of Civil Defense calls on citizens and residents not to risk themselves and their families, and avoid going to valleys or dangerous areas," Maj. Mohammed Al-Hammadi, Civil Defense spokesman, told Arab News.

King Abdulaziz International Airport told anyone traveling through the airport should check their flights since delays and cancellations were expected on Wednesday.

Saudi Arabia's Civil Defense said it had rescued 65 people in Tabuk and Al-Jouffrom the floodwaters, along with 37 more people in Duba.

The General Authority for Meteorology and Environmental Protection said rain was expected to continue in the north and west, including some areas which would experience sandstorms and gusty winds.

Twelve people died during the floods by Wednesday, including ten in the northwestern city of Tabuk, one in the holy city of Madinah, and one in a northern border town, according to the official SPA news agency.

The hardest hit areas are portions of Saudi Arabia along the border with Jordan.

The kingdom has set up a number of committees to assess the damage from the floods.

-WN.com, Maureen Foody

Photo: AP / Hassan Ammar
An unidentified Saudi family walk through a flooded street after a rainstorm in Jiddah, Saudi Arabia, Wednesday, Nov. 25, 2009., added: 2009-11-29
Photo: AP / Ricardo Mazalan
Photo: AP / Hassan Ammar
A man walks through a flooded street after a rainstorm in Jiddah, Saudi Arabia, Wednesday, Nov. 25, 2009., added: 2009-11-27
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