LPA may intensify into cyclone on New Year's Day - PAGASA forecaster

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Dec 30 2017 09:41 AM | Updated as of Dec 30 2017 05:23 PM

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MANILA (UPDATED) - A cluster of clouds east of Mindanao has developed into a low pressure area (LPA), a PAGASA weather forecaster said Saturday morning.

The weather disturbance is expected to enter the Philippine area of responsibility Saturday evening or Sunday, New Year's Eve, said forecaster Samuel Duran. 

The LPA will likely become a tropical depression on Jan. 1 and will be named "Agaton," the first weather system to enter the Philippines in 2018, he said. 

But if it intensifies before New Year's Day, it will be called "Wilma," the last weather disturbance of 2017. 

Duran said the weather system could make landfall over Eastern Visayas or Eastern Mindanao on Monday afternoon or Tuesday morning.

As of 2 p.m., the LPA was last spotted 1,145 kms east of Mindanao. Rains are, meanwhile, expected to prevail over Visayas because of the tail-end of a cold front.

Cagayan Valley, Cordillera, Aurora, and Quezon will meanwhile experience scattered rainshowers due to the northeast monsoon.

The rest of the country, including Metro Manila, will have isolated rainshowers.

PAGASA warned fishermen with small boats against venturing into the rough seas due to the northeast monsoon.

The new weather system is threatening the country one week after back-to-back storms "Urduja" and "Vinta" triggered deadly landslides and flooding across Visayas and Mindanao that left close to 300 people dead and scores missing.