Tropical Depression Luis to enhance southwest monsoon
MANILA, Philippines – Tropical Depression Luis will enhance the southwest monsoon or hanging habagat, which is affecting the western parts of Northern Luzon and Central Luzon.
In a bulletin issued 4 pm on Thursday, August 23, the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical, and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) said Luis is now 350 kilometers north northwest of Basco, Batanes, still moving east northeast at 15 kilometers per hour (km/h).
It continues to have maximum winds of 55 km/h and gustiness of up to 90 km/h.
Luis had made landfall in the vicinity of Kaohsiung, Taiwan, at 8 am on Thursday. Taiwan is still within the Philippine Area of Responsibility (PAR), the area set by the World Meteorological Organization for PAGASA to monitor. Weather disturbances inside PAR directly or indirectly affect the Philippines.
In the case of Luis, it is not expected to directly affect any part of the country, so there are no areas under tropical cyclone warning signals. But as PAGASA said, Luis will enhance the southwest monsoon.
The southwest monsoon will bring scattered rainshowers and thunderstorms to the Ilocos Region, the Cordillera Administrative Region, Zambales, Bataan, Batanes, and the Babuyan Group of Islands on Friday, August 24.
Residents of those areas should watch out for possible flash floods and landslides. (READ: FAST FACTS: Tropical cyclones, rainfall advisories)
The rest of the country, not affected by the southwest monsoon, will only have localized thunderstorms on Friday.
A gale warning was also issued at 5 pm on Thursday for Batanes, the Babuyan Group of Islands, the northern coast of Cagayan, Ilocos Norte, Ilocos Sur, La Union, Pangasinan, Zambales, Bataan, the eastern coast of Cagayan, Isabela, and Aurora.
This means seas off these areas are rough to very rough, with wave heights reaching 2.6 meters to 4.5 meters.
Fishermen and others with small vessels were advised not to set sail in areas covered by the gale warning. Larger vessels should watch out for big waves.
Based on its latest forecast track, Luis will leave PAR on Saturday, August 25.
Meanwhile, PAGASA is also monitoring a low pressure area (LPA) outside PAR, located 1,430 kilometers east of extreme Northern Luzon.
This LPA could enter PAR and possibly develop into a tropical depression within the next 36 to 48 hours. If it becomes a tropical depression, it would be named Maymay. (READ: LIST: PAGASA's names for tropical cyclones in 2018)
Luis is the Philippines' 12th tropical cyclone for 2018. The Philippines usually gets an average of 20 tropical cyclones per year.
PAGASA declared the start of the rainy season last June 8. – Rappler.com