MANILA - A cluster of clouds east of Mindanao may become a low pressure area before New Year's Day, the state weather bureau said Thursday.
The potential storm was threatening the country one week after back-to-back cyclones Urduja (Kai-tak) and Vinta (Tembin) flooded large swaths of the Visayas and Mindanao before Christmas, leaving close to 300 people killed.
The cloud cluster could form into low pressure area by Saturday, PAGASA forecaster Aldczar Aurelio told ABS-CBN News.
"Diyan pa lang malalaman kung possible maging bagyo (At such time, we can determine whether it will intensify into a typhoon)," he said.
The weather bureau debunked social media posts that warned of a coming super typhoon. It said a tropical storm in January was normal based on historical records.
"The general public is advised to be more careful, verify information and listen only to right authority so as not to cause panic," PAGASA said.
The tail-end of a cold front may bring rains to the eastern section of Southern Luzon and the Visayas, while the northeast monsoon is affecting Northern and Central Luzon, it said.
A large part of Mindanao, meanwhile, will experience cloudy skies with scattered rain showers and thunderstorms, it said.