New tropical storm to enter Philippines Thursday afternoon

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Thursday, June 14, 2012

MANILA (2nd Update, 9:22 a.m.) -- Tropical Storm Guchol is expected to enter the Philippine territory Thursday afternoon and will be codenamed "Butchoy," the weather bureau said.

In its latest advisory, the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (Pagasa) said the storm was estimated Thursday morning at 1,110 kilometers east of northern Mindanao. It has maximum sustained winds of 85 kilometers per hour (kph) near the center and gustiness of up to 100 kph.

The storm is moving west northwest at 20 kph.

Although Pagasa assured the storm won’t make landfall, it said Tropical Storm Guchol would intensify into a typhoon, enhancing the southwest monsoon.

"The new storm will be in the country for four to five days. If there is no change in its speed and direction, the cloud mass will be concentrated over northern Luzon. No indication of landfall whatsoever," senior weather forecaster Mario Palafox told Sun.Star.

In the meantime, Pagasa said Luzon will experience occasional rains becoming frequent over the western section that may trigger flash floods and landslides.

The western section of Visayas and Mindanao will have mostly cloudy skies with scattered rainshowers and thunderstorms, while the rest of the country will be partly cloudy to cloudy with isolated rainshowers and thunderstorms, Pagasa added.

Last week, Typhoon Ambo opened the rainy season leaving at least three people dead and six missing particularly in the southern part of the country.

Malacañang assured Wednesday that concerned agencies are attending the villages and towns affected by the massive flooding early this week brought about by monsoon rains.

Presidential spokesperson Edwin Lacierda said 40 individuals were rescued from the flooding, while there were two casualties reported in Sarangani.

He said the National Government is working closely with the local government unit with regard to relief and rescue operations.

Fishing boats and other small sea crafts are advised not to venture out into the sea, while larger sea vessels are alerted against big waves. (Sunnex)

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