MANILA - Hundreds of families were evacuated Monday night as tropical depression Chedeng roared closer to landfall over Davao Occidental.
Almost 500 families in Malita town in Chedeng's path took shelter in evacuation centers, many of them in schools.
State weather bureau PAGASA said Chedeng, the third tropical cyclone to enter the country this year, is expected to hit land early Tuesday.
In its 5 a.m. bulletin, Chedeng was last spotted 105 kilometers east of General Santos City, packing maximum sustained winds of 45 kilometers per hour (kph), with gusts of up to 60 kph. It is moving west-southwest at a speed of 15 kph.
Tropical cyclone warning signal no. 1 remains hoisted over the following areas, which could be whipped by winds of up to 30 to 60 kph in at least 36 hours:
-Davao del Sur
-eastern portion of North Cotabato
-eastern portion of South Cotabato
-eastern portion of Sarangani
-eastern portion of Sultan Kudarat
-General Santos City
-southern portion of Davao del Norte, including Samal Island
PAGASA said Chedeng is expected to weaken into a low-pressure area (LPA) after landfall, but would still dump moderate to heavy rains over most of Mindanao.
Those with small sea crafts are advised not to venture out over the eastern seaboards of the Visayas and Mindanao.
Classes were suspended Tuesday in parts of Mindanao due to rains from the tropical depression.
Visit the ABS-CBN Weather Center for the latest weather updates. - With a report from Chrislen Bulosan, ABS-CBN News