Tropical depression outside PAR now a tropical storm

A TROPICAL depression outside the Philippine Area of Responsibility (PAR) has intensified into a tropical storm with the international name “Phanfone,” the state weather bureau said Sunday, December 22, 2019.

In its 11 a.m. advisory, the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration Services (Pagasa) said Phanfone has no direct effect on any part of the country at the moment. It may enter PAR between Sunday evening, December 22, and Monday morning, December 23, and will be named “Ursula.”

The center of the tropical storm was was last seen 1,365 kilometers east of Mindanao, moving northwest at 15 kilometers per hour (km/h).

Phanfone packs maximum sustained winds of up to 65 km/h near its center with gusts up to 80 km/h.

Pagasa said the tropical storm is expected to make landfall between Eastern Visayas and Caraga area on Tuesday evening, December 24, and will traverse the Visayas area.

It added that moderate to occasional heavy rains may prevail over Visayas and northeastern Midanao beginning Tuesday.

Meanwhile, the low pressure area south southwest of Davao City has dissipated. However, Pagasa said cloudy skies with isolated rainshowers and thunderstorms will still prevail over Mindanao. (EZN/SunStar Philippines)