Severe Tropical Storm Onyok continues to intensify
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MANILA, Philippines – Severe Tropical Storm Onyok (Mitag) continued to intensify on Sunday afternoon, September 29, while still moving over the Philippine Sea.
In a bulletin issued 5 pm on Sunday, the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical, and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) said Onyok now has maximum winds of 110 kilometers per hour (km/h) from the previous 100 km/h and gustiness of up to 135 km/h from the previous 125 km/h.
Onyok might strengthen further into a typhoon within 24 hours. (READ: FAST FACTS: Tropical cyclones, rainfall advisories)
It is already 455 kilometers east of Calayan, Cagayan, moving northwest at a faster 25 km/h from the previous 15 km/h.
The severe tropical storm 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.
PAGASA added that Onyok's trough or extension will continue to trigger scattered rainshowers and thunderstorms, ranging from light to moderate. Below are the affected areas.
Sunday afternoon, September 29, to Monday afternoon, September 30
- Cagayan Valley
- Ilocos Norte
Other parts of the country will only have isolated rainshowers or localized thunderstorms on Monday, September 30.
Travel is also risky, especially for small vessels, in the northern and eastern seaboards of Luzon, including those areas under Signal No. 1.
Based on Onyok's latest forecast track, it could leave the Philippine Area of Responsibility on Monday evening.
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