Thursday, September 20, 2018

Storm signal number 1 hoisted over Catanduanes

MANILA. Weather forecaster Chris Perez in a press briefing Wednesday, September 12, 2018. (Screenshot from Pagasa Facebook video)

THE state weather bureau has raised Tropical Cyclone Warning Signal (TCWS) Number 1 over Catanduanes as Typhoon Mangkhut entered the Philippine area of responsibility (PAR) and was named Ompong Wednesday afternoon.

"The province of Catanduanes will experience the peripheral effects of Ompong within the next 36 hours," said the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (Pagasa).

As of 4 p.m. Wednesday, September 12, the eye of Ompong was located at 1,145 kilometers east of Virac, Catanduanes. The typhoon is packing maximum winds of 205 kilometers per hour (km/h) near the center and gusts of up to 255 km/h. It is moving west at 20 km/h, said Pagasa.

Ompong is expected to make landfall in the northern tip of Cagayan on Saturday (September 15), and TCWS Number 1 may also be raised in the provinces of Cagayan, Isabela, Aurora, Camarines Norte and Camarines Sur Thursday morning, September 13.

Southwest moonsoon (habagat) is affecting southern Luzon, Visayas and Mindanao, the weather bureau added.

Pagasa said earlier that Ompong will continue to move toward northern Luzon in the next two days.

The typhoon, the 15th to have entered PAR this year, is expected to reach a peak intensity of around 220 kilometers per hour of maximum sustained winds and gusts of up to 270 km/h on Thursday, September 13.

It is still threatening the northern luzon and may traverse the Cagayan-Batanes area on Saturday morning, September 15, with winds of around 255 km/h, said Pagasa.

Residents in northern Luzon have been warned against "very strong winds, storm surges over coastal areas and heavy to intense rains directly associated with the typhoon."

These are possible by Friday, September 14, in Cagayan and Isabela and on Saturday in northern Luzon, said weather forecaster Chris Perez in a press briefing Wednesday morning.

The typhoon, according to Pagasa, will bring occasional moderate to heavy rains due to the enhanced southwest monsoon in Zamboanga Peninsula, Northern Mindanao and provinces of Siquijor, Surigao del Norte, Agusan del Norte, Dinagat Islands, and Lanao del Sur.

On Thursday (September 13), Palawan, Bicol region and Eastern Visayas will also be affected, while on Friday (September 14), there will be heavy rains in Palawan, Zamboanga Peninsula, Western Visayas and Central Visayas.

"The rest of Luzon and Metro Manila may experience light to moderate rains with chances of occasional heavy rains with occasional gusty winds starting Friday, September 14," added Pagasa. (LMY/SunStar Philippines)