MANILA -- Tapping the social media to inform the public regarding the latest development of Typhoon Juan (international codename: Megi) proved beneficial for the state weather bureau after it earned raves in its up to date forecast.

Users of microblogging site Twitter and even President Benigno Aquino III praised the Philippine Atmospheric Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (Pagasa) for the hourly updates and the continuous monitoring of the typhoon.

“The thorough preparations of all concerned agencies are in marked contrast to the official helplessness of the past,” said Aquino, who earlier sacked then weather bureau chief Prisco Nilo for the inaccurate forecast on tropical storm Basyang (international codename: Conson) last July.

Science and Technology Undersecretary and Pagasa officer-in-charge Graciano Yumul said setting up a Twitter account was made following the President’s directive to provide hourly updates once storm enters the country.

“The President has been firm in his commitment to improve the weather forecasting services of Pagasa. Using Twitter for disseminating information is a big compliment to our usual press briefings. More people will be reached and we are glad to answer queries with regards to the typhoon,” he told Sun.Star.

As of this posting, the Twitter page attracted more than 24,000 followers and still counting. (Virgil Lopez/Sunnex)