It’s official: Early rainy season ‘feels late’
It arrived earlier than predicted, but it sure looked like it was announced late.
Friday’s advisory from the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (Pagasa) that the rainy season has officially begun should have been issued a week ago—if you ask residents, motorists and commuters who had waded through flash floods and were caught unprepared without umbrellas for the past few days.
Administrator Vicente Molano said the occurrence of widespread rainfall recorded in most Pagasa stations during the past few days caused by the southwest monsoon, locally known as “habagat,” confirmed the onset of the rainy season over the western parts of the country.
These areas, including Metro Manila, will continue to experience scattered to widespread rains and thunderstorms in the coming days.
However, such rain events may be followed by dry periods, also known as a “monsoon break,” that could last for several days up to two weeks.
“The public and all concerned agencies are advised to take precautionary measures against the impacts of the rainy season,” he said in the Pagasa advisory.
The onset of the rainy season was earlier than previously forecasted, mainly influenced by Tropical Storm “Domeng,” which on Friday continued to move farther away from the country.
Weather specialist Nikos Peñaranda said Domeng is expected to exit the Philippine area of responsibility (PAR) on Sunday morning.
As of Friday noon, it was spotted 560 kilometers east of Aparri in Cagayan province, maintaining its wind speed of 65 kilometers per hour and gusts of up to 80 kph, and continued to move at a north-northeasterly direction at 15 kph.
By Saturday afternoon, Domeng is expected to be 855 east-northeast of Basco and will intensify into a severe tropical storm by the time it exits PAR and approaches Japan, the weather bureau said.
Domeng will continue to enhance the southwest monsoon which will bring rains over southern Luzon mainly on Saturday, affecting Metro Manila and western parts of Calabarzon and Mimaropa.
Rains will move further north to Central Luzon and Ilocos region in succeeding days, Peñaranda said.
“Residents in critical low-lying areas will be under threat of flooding, while those in mountainous areas are warned of the possibility of landslides,” he said.
Pagasa forecasters said fisherfolk with small boats should not venture out into the sea, including those at the eastern portions of the country.
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