'Ursula' makes landfall in Salcedo, Eastern Samar

TYPHOON "Ursula" (international name Phanfone) made landfall in Salcedo, Eastern Samar at 4:45 p.m. Tuesday, December 24, and is bringing violent winds over the southern portion of the province, the Philippine Atmospheric Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (Pagasa) said.

Ursula was located at 20 kilometers (km) east northeast of Guiuan, Eastern Samar at 4 p.m. Tuesday. It is still moving west at 25 kilometers per hour (kph) with maximum winds of 120 kph and gustiness of up to 150 kph.

The weather bureau hoisted Tropical Cyclone Wind Signal number 3 (121-170 km/h winds prevailing or expected in 18 hours) over Masbate including Ticao Island, Northern Samar, Samar, Eastern Samar, Biliran, Leyte, and extreme Northern Cebu including Camotes Island (Daaanbantayan, Medellin, Bantayan, Sta. Fe, Madridejos, San Francisco, Poro, Tudela, Pilar) where destructive typhoon force winds will begin affecting these areas.

Damaging gale to storm-force winds will begin affecting areas under TCWS number 2 in Albay, Sorsogon, Romblon, Aklan, Capiz and portions of Antique, Iloilo, and rest of northern Cebu Tuesday night; in Marinduque, southern portion of Quezon, Mindoro Provinces Wednesday morning.

Areas under TCWS number 2: Southern portion of Quezon (Mulanay, San Narciso, San Andres, San Francisco), Marinduque, Oriental Mindoro, Occidental Mindoro including Lubang Island, Romblon, Albay, Sorsogon, Burias Island, Calamian and Cuyo Islands.

Also, Central portion of northern Cebu (Bogo City, Tabogon, Tabuelan, Borbon), northeastern Iloilo (Carles, Balasan, Estancia, Batad, San Dionisio, Sara, Concepcion, Lemery, Ajuy), northern Antique (Libertad, Pandan, Sebaste, Culasi, Tibiao), Capiz, Aklan, Southern Leyte and northern Negros Occidental (Enrique B. Magalona, Victorias, Manapla, Cadiz, Sagay, Escalante, Toboso), and Dinagat Islands.

Areas under Signal number 1 (30-60 km/h winds prevailing or expected in 36 hours) are

Bulacan, Bataan, Metro Manila, Rizal, Cavite, rest of Quezon, Laguna, Batangas, Camarines Sur, Camarines Norte, Catanduanes, northern Palawan (Linapacan, El Nido, Taytay, Araceli, Dumaran, San Vicente, Roxas).

The rest of Cebu, Bohol, Siquijor, the rest of Antique, the rest of Iloilo, Guimaras, Negros Oriental, and the rest of Negros Occidental, and Surigao del Norte including Siargao and Bucas Grande Islands are also under Signal number 1 that may experience moderate to strong winds.

Pagasa said storm surge of up to 2.0 meters may affect the several coastal areas of Eastern Samar, Northern Samar, and Leyte.

Ursula is expected to be in the vicinity of Magsaysay, Occidental Mindoro by Wednesday afternoon.

Rough sea conditions will prevail starting Tuesday off the eastern seaboards of the country; Tuesday afternoon or evening in Southern Luzon and Visayas; Wednesday afternoon off the western seaboards of Southern Luzon. Sea travel is risky in these areas.

Pagasa also advised residents in the areas mentioned to take appropriate measures to reduce impact of flooding and rain-induced landslides. (SunStar Philippines)