17 areas were placed under storm signals early Thursday as Tropical Storm Dindo (Doksuri) continued to move toward Extreme Northern Luzon, state weather forecasters said.
The Philippine Atmospheric Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration also warned of heavy rain in Southern Luzon and Visayas due to the southwest monsoon enhanced by “Dindo.”
“Maaaring ma-enhance ni ‘Dindo’ ang southwest monsoon,” PAGASA forecaster Jun Galang said in an interview on dzBB radio.
He said “Dindo” is likely to leave the Philippine area of responsibility by Friday, if it does not change its present course and speed.
But he said rain may still be expected over Northern and Central Luzon once “Dindo” leaves.
As of 4 a.m., PAGASA estimated “Dindo” at 260 km east of Aparri, Cagayan, with maximum sustained winds of 75 kph and gustiness of up to 90 kph.
It said “Dindo” is forecast to move west northwest at 19 kph, adding the southwest monsoon is still affecting Southern Luzon and Visayas.
“Isabela, Apayao, Kalinga, Mt. Province and Cagayan including Calayan, Babuyan and Batanes group of islands will experience stormy weather with rough to very rough seas. The rest of Northern Luzon and the province of Aurora will have occasional rains with gusty winds,” it said in its 5 a.m. bulletin.
The rest of Luzon and Visayas will have occasional rains becoming frequent over the western section. This may trigger flash floods and landslides, it added.
Mindanao will be partly cloudy to cloudy with isolated rain showers or thunderstorms.
Moderate to strong winds from the southwest will prevail over the rest of the country, making coastal waters along these areas moderate to rough.
17 areas under storm signals
PAGASA’s 5 a.m. advisory said “Dindo” may be 190 km north-northwest of Aparri, Cagayan Friday morning, and 530 km northwest of Basco, Batanes Saturday morning.
Projections by PAGASA and the Japan Meteorological Agency as of 5 a.m. indicated “Dindo” may be moving out of Philippine territory by Friday.
It said 10 areas are under Storm Signal No. 2. They are:
Seven areas are under Storm Signal No. 1:
PAGASA estimated “Dindo” may cause heavy to intense rainfall of 15 to 25 mm per hour within its 400-km diameter.
It also said “Dindo” is expected to enhance the southwest monsoon that will bring rain over Southern Luzon and Visayas, especially the western section, which may trigger landslides and flash floods and possible storm surge over areas under Signal 2.
Close watch on northern Luzon roads
Meanwhile, the Department of Public Works and Highways said it was keeping a close watch on roads in northern Luzon, especially in areas affected by Dindo.
Interviewed by radio dzBB, DPWH Undersecretary Romeo Momo said most roads were passable as of Thursday morning.
But Momo was quoted in the report as saying some roads leading to Lallo town in Cagayan were not passable but this was due to ongoing retrofitting work.
Cagayan is one of the areas placed under Storm Signal No. 2 as of Thursday morning.
The DPWH’s policy is to preposition heavy equipment in areas expected to be affected by cyclones, so they can quickly make repairs.