'Ramil' endangers Northern Luzon


Posted at Oct 22 2009 01:42 AM | Updated as of Oct 22 2009 10:36 AM

Signal no. 3 up in 5 provinces

DOST-PAGASA MTSAT-EIR Satellite Image for 1 a.m. 22 Oct. 2009

MANILA - The state weather bureau on Wednesday evening reported that Typhoon "Ramil" (international code name Lupit) continues to move in a west-southwest direction, endangering northern Luzon.

Public storm signals as of 11 p.m., 21 October 2009

PAGASA forecast track as of 8 p.m., 21 October 2009

Status of major dams, as of 8 p.m. 21 October 2009

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In their 11 p.m. severe weather bulletin, the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) reported that as of 10 p.m., "Ramil" was spotted 370 kilometers east northeast of Aparri, Cagayan.

"Ramil" is moving west southwest at 15 kilometers per hour - towards the general direction of northern Luzon - with maximum sustained winds of 175 kph near the center and gustiness of up to 210 kph.

Public storm warning signal number 3, which will experience winds between 100 to 185 kph, has been raised over the provinces of Batanes, Cagayan (including the Calayan and Babuyan island groups), Apayao, Kalinga, and Isabela.

Signal number 2 (winds of 60-100 kph) has been raised over Ilocos Norte, Ilocos Sur, Abra, Mountain Province, Ifugao, Benguet, La Union, Nueva Vizcaya, Quirino, and Aurora.

Signal number 1 (winds of 30-60 kph) meanwhile has been raised over Pangasinan, Pampanga, Bulacan, northern Quezon (including the Polilio Islands), Nueva Ecija, Tarlac, and Zambales.

The typhoon is expected to make landfall over Cagayan by Thursday night or Friday morning, PAGASA weather bureau chief Nathaniel Cruz said in a 5 p.m. briefing at the PAGASA central office in Quezon City.

Residents in low-lying areas and near mountain slopes under signals #3, #2, and #1 are advised to take all the necessary precautionary measures against possible flashfloods and landslides, the bulletin stated.

Cruz, in an interview on ABS-CBN's Bandila newscast later in the evening, also said that the typhoon is estimated to bring an average of around 20 to 25 millimeters of rainfall per hour, and cautioned affected areas that this amount is already a significant amount.

Those living along the coast in areas under signal #2 and #3 are advised to be on alert against storm surges and big waves generated by the typhoon, it added.

The bureau also reported that strong to gale force winds are expected to affect the eastern seaboards of central and southern Luzon, with wind forces between 55 to 68 kph.

Gale force winds are also expected in the eastern seaboard of Visayas, with mostly cloudy skies with scattered rainshowers and thunderstorms, with wind forces of 52 to 63 kph.

Seas in these areas will be rough to very rough, with wave heights estimated between 3.4 to 5.0 meters.

Fishing boats and other small seacraft are advised not to venture out into the sea, while larger sea vessels are alerted against big waves, the PAGASA said.

Meanwhile, as of 8 p.m., 3 dams in Luzon are undergoing spilling operations. These are the Ambuklao, San Roque, and Magat dams, all in northern Luzon.

The rest of the dams in the island are under normal conditions, Cruz said.