MANILA — The low pressure area spotted off Mindanao and forecast to enter the Philippine area of responsibility in a few days has become a tropical depression and could intensify into a typhoon, PAGASA said before Sunday noon.
The tropical depression was estimated at 2,095 kilometers east of Mindanao, outside of the PAR, at around 10 a.m., PAGASA said in its latest bulletin.
It has maximum sustained winds of up to 45 kilometers per hour (kph) near the center, and gustiness of up to 55 kph.
"The tropical depression is forecast to gradually intensify and may reach tropical storm category within the next 24 hours," said PAGASA.
PAGASA said the cyclone is expected to enter the PAR on Tuesday, after which it will be assigned the local name "Odette."
"By Wednesday evening or Thursday morning, the tropical cyclone will begin to move westward and may make landfall over Eastern Visayas-Caraga area," it said.
"Due to favorable environmental conditions, the tropical cyclone will likely continue to intensify and may reach typhoon category by Tuesday evening or Wednesday early morning," it added.
PAGASA said it was likely for tropical storm signals to be hoisted over provinces in Visayas and Mindanao.
"Considering these developments, the public and disaster risk reduction and management offices concerned are advised to continue monitoring for updates related to this tropical cyclone," it added.
The Philippine Red Cross (PRC) has directed its services, chapters and volunteers to prepare for the low pressure area, its chairman Sen. Richard Gordon said.
In a statement, the PRC said its rescue vehicles and emergency response units are prepared to respond to the possible effects of the incoming storm.
Visit the ABS-CBN Weather Center for the latest weather updates.