Tropical depression outside PAR becomes Tropical Storm Kong-rey
MANILA, Philippines – The tropical depression outside the Philippine Area of Responsibility (PAR) intensified into a tropical storm on Saturday afternoon, September 29. It has been given the international name Kong-rey.
In a Facebook Live video on Saturday, the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical, and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) said Tropical Storm Kong-rey is now 1,815 kilometers east of the Visayas. It slightly slowed down, moving west northwest at 35 kilometers per hour (km/h) from the previous 40 km/h.
The tropical storm has maximum winds of 65 km/h from the previous 60 km/h and gustiness of up to 80 km/h from the previous 75 km/h. Since it is still over water, it could intensify further. (READ: FAST FACTS: Tropical cyclones, rainfall advisories)
If Kong-rey maintains its speed, it could enter PAR on Tuesday, October 2. If it does enter, it would become the Philippines' 17th tropical cyclone for 2018 and would be given the local name Queenie.
The country usually gets an average of 20 tropical cyclones per year. (READ: LIST: PAGASA's names for tropical cyclones in 2018)
Since the tropical storm remains far from PAR, it is still uncertain how strong it would be or which path it would take. PAGASA is expected to give details in the coming days.
Meanwhile, Typhoon Paeng (Trami), which left PAR at 6 am on Saturday, is already located 910 kilometers northeast of Basco, Batanes.
Though Paeng is already outside PAR, its trough or extension is still affecting parts of Luzon.
Paeng's trough will bring scattered rainshowers and thunderstorms to Ilocos Norte, Ilocos Sur, Batanes, and the Babuyan Group of Islands. Flash floods and landslides are possible.
The rest of the country will only have localized thunderstorms. But flash floods and landslides are still possible if the thunderstorms bring heavy rain.
PAGASA also warned that sea travel remains risky in some areas.
A gale warning was issued at 5 pm on Saturday for Batanes, the Babuyan Group of Islands, Calayan, Ilocos Norte, the northern and eastern coasts of Cagayan, Isabela, Aurora, Camarines Norte, Camarines Sur, Catanduanes, and the eastern coast of Quezon including Polillo Island.
Seas off those areas are rough to very rough, with wave heights reaching 2.8 meters to 4.5 meters.
PAGASA advised fishermen and others with small vessels not to set sail in areas covered by the gale warning. Larger vessels should watch out for big waves.
PAGASA declared the start of the rainy season last June 8. – Rappler.com