Heavy rains feared as ‘Luis’ bears down on Luzon, Visayas
MANILA, Philippines—Luzon and Visayas are bracing for heavy rains brought on by a tropical cyclone that had intensified into a tropical storm, which is expected to make landfall in either Isabela or Cagayan province Sunday night.
The Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (Pagasa) said Tropical Storm “Luis,” which entered the country Friday morning, has enhanced the southwest monsoon and brought continued heavy rains over the Visayas and Mindanao.
Friday night, Pagasa raised Signal No. 1 over Catanduanes since the storm’s center was estimated at about 660 kilometers east of Virac as of 5 p.m.
More storm warning signals are expected to be raised as the storm approaches landfall either Friday night or Monday morning, weather services assistant chief Rene Paciente said in a briefing at the National Disaster Risk Reduction Management Council (NDRRMC) Friday afternoon.
Paciente said Luis is moving in the direction of northern Luzon, which is why Pagasa has sent out a warning to residents there to be on the alert.
The affected provinces in the area are Cagayan, Isabela, Apayao, Benguet, Ilocos Norte and Ilocos Sur, he said.
The Pagasa official said heavy rains are expected in southern Luzon and the Visayas starting this morning.
“We are advising our people to be alert to possible flooding and landslide,” Paciente said.
“By Sunday night, heavy rains are expected over northern and Central Luzon. By Monday morning, the entire northern and Central Luzon will experience heavy rains,” Paciente said, adding that the storm may intensify into a typhoon once it nears land.
Luis is expected to hit land over Isabela or Cagayan province Sunday night or early morning Monday, he said.
It is expected to be over the West Philippine Sea by Monday night and outside the Philippine area of responsibility by Tuesday morning.
As of 5 p.m. Friday, Luis was estimated to have maximum sustained winds of 65 kilometers per hour near the center and gustiness up to 80 kph.
Moderate to heavy rainfall
Pagasa said the storm will bring moderate to heavy rainfall of five to 15 millimeters per hour over affected areas within its 400-km diameter.
Moving in a west-northwest direction at 26 kph, the storm’s center is forecast to get closer to Casiguran, Aurora, during the weekend.
This afternoon, it is forecast to be 290 km southeast of Casiguran, Aurora, 80 km north northeast of the town by Sunday afternoon.
After the landfall either Sunday night or Monday morning, it is expected to be 80 km west of Sinait, Ilocos Sur, by Monday afternoon.
This is the 12th tropical cyclone to enter the country this year, although the latest of a series of low pressure areas have brought heavy floods in the Visayas and Mindanao this week.
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