LPA develops into Tropical Depression Sarah; 'Ramon' now a typhoon

THE low pressure area (LPA) east northeast of Borongan City, Eastern Samar developed into a tropical depression Tuesday afternoon, November 19, while Severe Tropical Storm Ramon intensified into a typhoon, said the state weather bureau.

The Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (Pagasa) said the LPA was named Sarah after it developed into a tropical depression around 2 p.m. Tuesday.

As of 4 p.m., its center was located at 615 kilometers east northeast of Borongan City, Eastern Samar, with maximum sustained winds of up to 55 kilometers per hour (km/h) and gusts of up to 70 km/h. It was moving northeast at 35 km/h.

Typhoon Ramon, on the other hand, was located at 100 kilometers east of Calayan, Cagayan as of 3 p.m. Tuesday, with maximum sustained winds of 120 km/h near its center and gusts of up to 165 km/h.

It has remained almost stationary and is expected to make landfall over the Babuyan Islands between Tuesday evening and Wednesday morning, November 20.

But due to the land interaction and the northeast monsoon, Ramon is forecast to weaken following landfall, said Pagasa.

The weather bureau warned residents in La Union and Pangasinan of a possible two-meter storm surge.

Tropical Cyclone Wind Signal (TCWS) Number 3 has been raised over the northern portion of Cagayan (Santa Praxedes, Claveria, Sanchez Mira, Pamplona, Abulug, Ballesteros, Aparri, Calayan, Camalaniugan, Buguey, Santa Teresita, Gonzaga, and Santa Ana).

Batanes, Apayao, Kalinga, Abra, Ilocos Norte, Ilocos Sur, and the rest of Cagayan remained under TCWS Number 2, while the northern portion of Isabela (Sta. Maria, San Pablo, Maconacon, Cabagan, Sto. Tomas, Quezon, Delfin Albano, Tumauini, Divilacan, Quirino, Roxas, Mallig, San Manuel, Burgos, Gamu, and Ilagan City), Mountain Province, Benguet, Ifugao, La Union, and Pangasinan remained under TCWS Number 1.

Pagasa said moderate with frequent heavy rains will be experienced Tuesday evening over Batanes, the northern portion of Cagayan (including the Babuyan Islands), Apayao, and the northern portion of Ilocos Norte, while the northern portion of Isabela, Kalinga, Abra and the rest of Cagayan and Ilocos Sur will experience light to moderate with intermittent heavy rains.

On Wednesday, November 20, light to moderate with occasional heavy rains will be experienced over Batanes, the northern portion of Cagayan (including the Babuyan Islands), and Apayao, while Isabela, the rest of Cagayan, northern portion of Aurora, Kalinga, and Ilocos Norte will experience light to moderate with intermittent heavy rains.

Pagasa advised residents in the aforementioned areas, especially those living in areas identified to be highly or very highly susceptible to flooding and rain-induced landslides, to take appropriate actions, coordinate with local disaster risk reduction and management offices, and continue monitoring for updates.

It said sea travel is risky, especially for small sea vessels, over the seaboards of areas under TCWS, and the western seaboard of Zambales and Bataan due to prevailing or forecast rough sea conditions. (EZN/SunStar Philippines)