Public warning signals lowered; ‘Ambo’ continues to move away-A A +A
Saturday, June 2, 2012
MANILA (Updated 11:12 a.m.) -- The state weather bureau lowered Saturday morning the public storm warning signals elsewhere in the country, although five provinces in Luzon remain under signal number 1 due to Tropical Storm “Ambo” (international codename: Mawar).
The Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (Pagasa) spotted “Ambo” as of 11 a.m. Saturday at 200 kilometers east northeast of Casiguran, Aurora. It is packing maximum winds of 85 kilometers per hour (kph) and gustiness of up to 100 kph.
Pagasa placed under storm warning signal number 1 the provinces of Aurora, Isabela, Cagayan, Babuyan Island, and Batanes Group of Islands as “Ambo” intensified further as it continues to move north northwestward at 13 kph.
“Ambo” is expected to be at 240 kilometers northeast of Aparri, Cagayan by Sunday, 350 kilometers northeast of Basco, Batanes by Monday, and 680 kilometers northeast of Basco, Batanes by Tuesday.
Pagasa said the storm is expected to enhance the southwest monsoon that will bring rains over Central and Southern Luzon and Visayas. “Ambo” is the country's first tropical cyclone for this year.
The weather bureau defines a tropical storm as a moderate tropical cyclone with maximum wind speed of 64 to 118 kph.
Robert Sawi, officer-in-charge of the weather division of Pagasa, said Ambo will bring heavy rains of 15 to 25 millimeters per hour within its 400-kilometer radius.
He said it may exit the Philippine Area of Responsibility (PAR) as early as Monday.
"Residents living in low-lying and mountainous areas under signal number 1 are alerted against possible flash floods and landslides," Pagasa said.
Fishing boats and other small sea crafts are also advised not to venture out into the seaboard of Southern Luzon and Visayas and the eastern seaboard of Northern and Central Luzon due to the combined effect of Tropical Storm “Ambo” and the southwest monsoon.
Due to rough seas, the Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) reiterated its regulation that vessels of 1,000-gross tons or below shall not be permitted to sail in case of public storm signal number 1.
So far, Ambo has sidelined 332 passengers in various ports in Bicol broken down as follows: 280 (Tabaco, Albay) and 52 (Catanduanes).
Stranded as well are seven vessels, 24 trucks, three buses and six cars, according to PCG spokesperson Lieutenant Commander Armand Balilo. (Sunnex)