Super Typhoon may make landfall in Batanes today
Manila, Philippines — Super typhoon “Odette” is expected to make a landfall in the Batanes group of islands this morning if it doesn’t change course, the state weather bureau said yesterday.
The Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical, and Astronomical Services (PAGASA) has already raised public storm warning Signal No. 4 over Batanes group of islands, while 16 other provinces in Luzon are also under public storm warning signals as “Odette” (international name: Usagi) accelerated and gained more strength while moving closer to extreme northern Luzon.
PAGASA said winds of more than 185 kph is expected within the next 12 hours in the Batanes group of islands.
Placed under public storm warning Signal No. 3 are the Calayan group of islands and Babuyan group of islands, with winds of more than 100 kph up to 185 kph may expected in the next 18 hours.
PAGASA said areas placed under public storm warning Signal No. 2 (61-100 kph winds) include Cagayan, Apayao, and Ilocos Norte.
Public storm warning Signal No. 1 (30-60 kph winds), on the other hand, was hoisted over Abra, Kalinga, Isabela, Northern Aurora, Quirino, Nueva Vizcaya, Benguet, La Union, Ilocos Sur, Mountain Province, and Ifugao.
“Residents in low-lying and mountainous areas under signals 4, 3, 2, and 1 are alerted against possible flash floods and landslides. Likewise, those living in coastal areas under Signals 3 and 2 are alerted against storm surges,” PAGASA said.
Weather forecaster Gener Quitlong said that as of 10 a.m., “Odette” was spotted at 350 km east northeast of Aparri, Cagayan, or at 360 km east of Calayan Island, Cagayan (19.5°N, 125.1°E).
Qutlong said that the typhoon’s wind strength increased from 175 kilometers per hour (kph) Friday morning to 205 kph before noon, while its gustiness rose from 210 kph to 240 kph.
This morning, Odette might make a landfall in Batanes.
He added that Odette continues to move northwest while its movement also accelerates from 15 kph to 19 kph.
“Odette” was forecast to be at 50 km east of Basco, Batanes by Saturday morning.
By Sunday morning it is predicted to be outside the Philippine Area of Responsibility (PAR) or at 310 km northwest of Basco, Batanes and will be headed toward Hong Kong and southern China.
Quitlong also said that typhoon Odette continues to affect the areas of northern and central Luzon while southwest monsoon enhance by the typhoon affecting Southern Luzon and also Western Visayas.
PAGASA said Odette may bring rainfall of 10 to 20 mm per hour (heavy to intense) within its 900-km diameter of the typhoon.
PAGASA said that “Odette” will continue to enhance the southwest monsoon that will bring moderate to occasionally heavy rains and thunderstorms over Metro Manila, the rest of Luzon and Western Visayas.
It said that residents in these areas are advised to be alert against flashfloods and landslides.
PAGASA also said that sea travel is risky over the western seaboard of Southern Luzon and over the eastern seaboard of Central and Southern Luzon and of Visayas.
Meanwhile, the Office of the Civil Defense (OCD) in Region 1placed on red alert status Ilocos Norte and Ilocos Sur in preparation for the super typhoon, while the provinces of La Union and Pangasinan were place under blue alert status.
OCD Region 1 Director Melchito Castro said that his office is now under 24/7 monitoring system for the effects of the super typhoon. (PNA and Freddie G. Lazaro)