MANILA (UPDATE)—Tropical storm Dante (international name: Choi-wan) maintained its strength as it continued to move towards Eastern Visayas, the state weather bureau said Tuesday.
In its 5 a.m. weather bulletin, PAGASA said Dante was spotted at 4 a.m. approximately 310 km east of Surigao City, Surigao del Norte, packing maximum sustained winds of 75 kph near the center and gusts of up to 90 kph.
Tropical cyclone wind Signal No. 2, which may tilt some wooden, old electric posts, was hoisted over the following areas:
- Eastern Samar
- Northern Samar
The following areas were placed under tropical cyclone wind Signal No. 1, which may cause slight damage to some houses of very light materials or makeshift structures:
- Camarines Sur
- Camarines Norte
- the southeastern portion of Quezon (Tagkawayan, Guinayangan, Buenavista, San Narciso, San Andres)
- Southern Leyte
- the northern portion of Cebu (Catmon, Sogod, Borbon, Tabogon, City of Bogo, Medellin, Daanbantayan, San Remigio, Tabuelan) including Bantayan and Camotes Islands
- the northern portion of Surigao del Sur (San Agustin, Marihatag, Cagwait, City of Tandag, Bayabas, Tago, Cortes, Lanuza, Carmen, Madrid, Cantilan, Carrascal, San Miguel)
- the northern portion of Agusan del Sur (Sibagat)
- the northern portion of Agusan del Norte (City of Cabadbaran, Santiago, Tubay, Jabonga, Kitcharao)
- Dinagat Islands
- Surigao del Norte
The weather agency said the country's fourth tropical cyclone this year will continue moving northwestward until Wednesday.
It is expected to make an initial landfall over Eastern Samar between Tuesday night and Wednesday morning, and pass by the vicinity of Camarines Sur-Catanduanes area by Wednesday afternoon.
Dante will then turn generally northward over the Philippine Sea by Thursday until Friday.
The weather disturbance is expected to reach severe tropical storm category by Wednesday before dissipating throughout its movement.
It is forecast to leave the Philippine area of responsibility by Sunday, said PAGASA weather forecaster Ana Clauren.
"Asahan natin na itong si Bagyong Dante ay dhail sakanya posibleng magstart ang ating tag-ulan season at posibleng ang hangin natin ay mag-onset na po ng southwest monsoon season," she told ABS-CBN's Teleradyo.
(Expect the rainy season to begin with tropical storm Dante and the onset of the southwest monsoon season.)
Due to Dante, PAGASA said that moderate to heavy rains may prevail over ver Eastern Visayas, the northern portion of Cebu including Bantayan and Camotes Islands, Dinagat Islands, Surigao del Norte, Surigao del Sur, Agusan del Norte, Sorsogon, and Masbate Tuesday.
Light to moderate with at times heavy rains are also likely over Catanduanes, Albay, Camarines Sur, Misamis Oriental, Agusan del Sur, Camiguin, Bukidnon, Davao Region, and Soccsksargen, and the rest of Central Visayas.
The bureau warned of isolated to scattered flooding (including flash floods), and rain-induced landslides are possible in areas that are highly or very highly susceptible to these hazards.
PAGASA also warned of rough to very rough seas will be experienced over the seaboards of Samar provinces and the eastern seaboard of Caraga (2.5 to 4.5 m). Moderate to rough seas (1.2 to 3.0 m) are also expected over the eastern seaboard of Davao Oriental and other areas under signal no. 1. Sea travel is risky for small seacrafts over these waters.
"Mariners of small seacrafts are advised to take precautionary measures when venturing out to sea. Inexperienced mariners should avoid navigating in these conditions," the agency said.
A 71-year-old man was found dead early Monday after being swept by floods brought by tropical storm Dante in Davao del Sur, police said.
In Davao de Oro, the local governments of Compostela and Monkayo suspended classes in all levels in public and private schools on Monday because of the storm.
For more updates, visit the ABS-CBN Weather Center.