Tropical Storm Onyok continues to strengthen
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MANILA, Philippines – Tropical Storm Onyok (Mitag) slightly intensified again and slowed down over the Philippine Sea on Saturday evening, September 28.
In a bulletin issued 11 pm on Saturday, the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical, and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) said Onyok now has maximum winds of 85 kilometers per hour (km/h) from the previous 75 km/h and gustiness of up to 105 km/h from the previous 90 km/h.
Onyok might intensify further into a severe tropical storm, and then possibly into a typhoon after that. (READ: FAST FACTS: Tropical cyclones, rainfall advisories)
It is already 760 kilometers east of Tuguegarao City, Cagayan, moving west northwest at a slower 25 km/h from the previous 35 km/h.
Onyok is not expected to make landfall in the Philippines. But Signal No. 1 remains raised in:
- Babuyan Group of Islands
Signal No. 1 means winds of 30 km/h to 60 km/h are expected.
Travel is also risky, especially for small vessels, in seaboards of areas under Signal No. 1.
PAGASA added that Onyok's trough or extension is bringing scattered rainshowers and thunderstorms, ranging from light to moderate. Two regions are affected until Sunday evening, September 29:
- Eastern Visayas
The rest of the country will only have isolated rainshowers or localized thunderstorms on Sunday.
Based on Onyok's latest forecast track, it could leave the Philippine Area of Responsibility on Monday, September 30.
Onyok is the Philippines' 15th tropical cyclone for 2019, and the 5th in September. (READ: LIST: PAGASA's names for tropical cyclones in 2019)
The country gets an average of 20 tropical cyclones annually, but since 2019 is an El Niño year, only 14 to 18 tropical cyclones are expected.
At most 4 tropical cyclones had been previously forecast for September. Below is the estimated number of tropical cyclones from September to December:
- September - 2 to 4
- October - 2 or 3
- November - 1 or 2
- December - 0 or 1
PAGASA declared the start of the rainy season last June 14. – Rappler.com