MANILA - A tropical storm off Luzon's northern coast may intensify into a super typhoon as it moves closer to the country, the state weather bureau said Sunday.
Spotted 3,000 kilometers east of northern Luzon, Tropical Storm Mangkhut is set to enter the Philippine area of responsibility (PAR) on Wednesday or Thursday, said PAGASA weather forecaster Gener Quitlong.
"Baka nga maging super typhoon pa nga po ito. Baka umabot ito kay Jebi... iyung tumama sa Japan," he told radio DZMM.
(It may even become a super typhoon. It may become as strong as Jebi, which hit Japan.)
Super Typhoon Jebi, locally named Maymay, only grazed the Philippine border last week and instead struck Japan, killing at least 11 people and injuring dozens.
In 2013, Super Typhoon Haiyan (Yolanda) pounded the Visayas, where it left a wide trail of destruction and some 7,350 people dead or missing.
Mangkhut, which is set to be the country's strongest typhoon so far this year, could lash extreme northern Luzon with heavy to intense rains, PAGASA weather forecaster Ezra Bulquerin told ABS-CBN News online.
For now, the trough or extension of a low pressure area (LPA) over the Pacific Ocean may bring rains over the whole Mindanao and the central and western sections of Visayas, said Quitlong.
Another LPA, meanwhile, will cause scattered rains over the Batanes and Babuyan islands. The weather disturbance spotted 130 kilometers northwest of Basco, Batanes could also strengthen into a storm, he added.
Metro Manila, the rest of Luzon and the eastern section of Visayas may experience localized thunderstorms, Quitlong said.
Visit the ABS-CBN Weather Center for the latest weather updates.