AN OFFICIAL of the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (Pagasa) announced Tuesday that eight more tropical cyclones are expected to enter the country this year.
The first of these eight cyclones may enter the Philippine area of responsibility (PAR) next week, September 25, based on the weather bureau's forecast, said Engr. Oscar Tabada, Pagasa-Visayas director.
Tabada said that once it enters PAR, it will be named Helen, the eighth tropical cyclone after Ambo, Butchoy, Carina, Dindo, Enteng, Ferdie, and Gener.
He said Helen will still move toward extreme north Luzon and will cross Taiwan, following the path of Gener and the cyclones before it.
As of September 20, Tabada said that Typhoon Gener was located somewhere in Japan.
While the previous cyclones have not hit a large part of the country, Tabada warned that the next batch may affect the country directly.
"For September, we still have the southwest monsoon (habagat), but as far as we know, there will be a transition from habagat to amihan. The wind will be colder already, since it will come from the northeastern side of the country. So there's a big possibility that typhoons will hit us. Delikado na nga ang bagyo ari na sad sa ato," he said.
"Karon, naa koy gut feeling nga naa gyuy bagyo nga muigo nato, so bantayan gyud na nato (I have a gut feeling that a strong typhoon will hit Cebu. So let us prepare for it)," Tabada added.
For this week, he said Metro Cebu and the province will experience mostly cloudy with light to moderate and at times heavy rains, with winds of 10-15 kilometers per hour (kph) coming from the southeast.
Bohol will have mostly cloudy with light to moderate and at times heavy rains from September 20 to 26. "Winds from the south will be at 10-15 kph and condition of coastal waters will be slight to moderate."
Dumaguete, the rest of Negros Oriental, and Siquijor will experience mostly cloudy with light to moderate and at times heavy rains (Tuesday to Monday), with winds of 10-15 kph from the southeast.
Tabada said the Pagasa forecast may change depending on the atmospheric condition.
But he stressed that with the technology nowadays, the weather bureau can already identify any developments in the Pacific at least one or two weeks before a cyclone fully develops.
"We have six Dopler radars. So what's important is for the public to be forewarned before a disaster strikes," he said.
Tabada also advised the public to watch out for the amount of rains, not just the strength of winds brought by typhoons, saying most deaths were caused by flooding and drowning.
"Daghan gyug casualty sa flooding. So bantayan gyud na nato," he said. (With Tovya Kaiko Galeon, USJR intern/Sunnex)