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New typhoon nears PH

Manila, Philippines – The tropical storm with international name Francisco, hovering off the Pacific Ocean, has intensified into a typhoon and continues to move towards the country, the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical, and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) said yesterday.

Francisco was still in Guam as of press time yesterday afternoon.

In an interview, PAGASA weather forecaster Alvin Pura said the cyclone continues to move towards the country and will likely enter the Philippine area of responsibility (PAR) tomorrow night or Monday morning.

Once it enters Philippine territory, it will be locally named “Urduja,” said Pura.

However, Pura said that just like typhoon “Tino,” the cyclone is forecast to stay inside the Philippine territory for less than 48 hours and is not expected to make landfall as it passes far off east of Northern Luzon.

Today, Luzon will have generally clear skies with just light rains over Palawan while the Ilocos Region, the Cordillera Administrative Region and Cagayan Valley will have scattered light rains.

Metro Manila and the rest of the country will be partly cloudy to cloudy with isolated rainshowers or thunderstorms as moderate to strong winds from the northeast will prevail over Luzon.

Urduja will be the fourth cyclone to enter the country this month and the 21st for the year. Once it exits the country, Pura said it is expected to move towards southern Japan.

‘Amihan’ Sets In

Meanwhile, Pura said the northeast monsoon (hanging amihan) has set in, initially affecting Northern Luzon before reaching other parts of the country.

The northeast monsoon is usually associated with the Christmas season.

It is the cold winds from Siberia that blows into the country, usually from mid-October until mid-February.

He said the southwest monsoon (hanging habagat) has already ceased.

The southwest monsoon is the prevailing weather system in the country from June to early October or during rainy season.