'Ursula' maintains strength, makes landfall in 5 areas

TYPHOON "Ursula" (international name Phanfone) has maintained its strength as it threatens the northern tip of Aklan - Antique area and Romblon, the state weather bureau said Wednesday morning, December 25.

The Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (Pagasa) said Ursula has made landfall in five areas since Tuesday afternoon: Salcedo, Eastern Samar at 4:45 p.m.; Tacloban City, Leyte at 7:30 p.m.; Cabucgayan, Biliran at 9:15 p.m.; and Gigantes Island, Carles, Iloilo at 2:30 a.m.; and Ibajay, Aklan at 8:40 a.m. Wednesday.

As of 10 a.m. Wednesday, Pagasa said Ursula was located at Libertad, Antique packing maximum winds of up to 140 kilometers per hour (kph) and gustiness of 195 kph. It is moving west at 20 kph and is expected to be at 215 kilometers west northwest of Coron, Palawan.

Meanwhile, Tropical Cyclone Wind Signals (TCWS) are now lifted over Eastern Samar, Northern Samar, Samar, Camotes Islands, central and southern Cebu, Southern Leyte, Biliran, Leyte, Bohol, Siquijor, and Catanduanes.

Areas under TCWS signal number 3 (121-170 km/h winds prevailing or expected in 18 hours) are: Romblon, southern Oriental Mindoro (Roxas, Mansalay, Bulalacao, Bongabong, Bansud), southern Occidental Mindoro (Calintaan, Rizal, San Jose, Magsaysay, southern portion of Sablayan), Calamian Islands (Busuanga, Coron, Culion), Capiz, Aklan, northern Antique (Caluya, Libertad, Pandan, Sebaste, Culasi, Tibiao, Barbaza, Laua-an).

While TCWS signal number 2 (61-120 km/h winds prevailing or expected in 24 hours) is hoisted over Southern portion of Quezon (Macalelon, General Luna, Catanauan, Mulanay, San Narciso, San Andres, San Francisco), Marinduque, the rest of Oriental Mindoro, the rest of Occidental Mindoro including Lubang Island, Masbate including Ticao and Burias Islands, Cuyo Islands, extreme northern portion of mainland Palawan (Linapacan, El Nido, Taytay, Araceli), Iloilo, Guimaras, and the rest of Antique.

The areas under TCWS signal number 1 (30-60 km/h winds prevailing or expected in 36 hours) are Bataan, Metro Manila, Rizal, Cavite, the rest of Quezon, Laguna, Batangas, Camarines Sur, Camarines Norte, Albay, Sorsogon, and the rest northern mainland Palawan (Dumaran, San Vicente, Roxas), Cagayancillo Islands, The rest of Negros Occidental, Northern Cebu including Batayan Islands (Bantayan, Madridejos, Sta. Fe, Daanbantayan, Medelin, Bogo City, San Remigio, Tabogon, Tabuelan, Tuburan, Asturias, Carmen, Catmon, Sogod, Borbon, Tabogon), and Negros Occidental.

Rough sea conditions will prevail over the seaboards of areas under TCWS, as well the seaboards of Aurora, and the northern and eastern seaboards of Mindanao. Sea travel remains risky over these areas.

Ursula is moving towards Semirara Island, Caluya Island, and Sibay Island within three hours.