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MANILA, Philippines – What was initially a tropical depression outside the Philippine Area of Responsibility (PAR) is now a tropical storm with international name Mekkhala, state weather bureau PAGASA said.
In its 5 pm bulletin Wednesday, January 14, PAGASA said Mekkhala is now at 1,365 km east of the Visayas, with maximum sustained winds of 65 km/h near the center and gustiness of up to 80 km/h. It will move west northwest at 19 km/h.
PAGASA weather observer Blecy Bartolome told Rappler the tropical storm could enter PAR Thursday morning, January 15, around 8 to 9 am.
Once it enters the Philippines, it will be given the name “Amang,” making it the first storm of 2015, PAGASA earlier told Rappler.
The forecasted arrival of the storm coincides with Pope Francis’ visit to the Philippines. Catholic Church representatives have said the storm could prompt organizers to cancel the Pope’s visit to Leyte province.
A northeast monsoon is also affecting Luzon.
Caraga and Eastern Visayas will experience cloudy skies with light to moderate rains on Thursday. Cagayan Valley will also experience the same skies but with light rains.
Thunderstorms are likely over the rest of the Visayas and Mindanao, where skies will be partly cloudy to cloudy with isolated rains. Meanwhile, Metro Manila and the rest of Luzon will be partly cloudy to at times cloudy with isolated light rains.
Moderate to strong winds will blow from the northeast over Luzon and the Visayas, and from the northeast to north over Mindanao. These areas will have moderate to rough seas.
|Metro Manila||Partly cloudy to cloudy skies with isolated light rains||19°C-30°C|
|Laoag||Partly cloudy to cloudy skies with isolated light rains||19°C-29°C|
|Baguio||Partly cloudy to cloudy skies with isolated light rains||13°C-21°C|
|Subic/Olongapo; Clark/Angeles||Partly cloudy to cloudy skies with isolated light rains||22°C-28°C|
|Tagaytay||Partly cloudy to cloudy skies with isolated light rains||17°C-28°C|
|Lipa||Partly cloudy to cloudy skies with isolated light rains||23°C-28°C|
|Legazpi||Partly cloudy to cloudy skies with isolated light rains||24°C-28°C|
|Puerto Princesa||Partly cloudy to cloudy skies with isolated light rains||25°C-29°C|
|Iloilo/Bacolod||Partly cloudy to cloudy skies with isolated rainshowers or thunderstorms||25°C-29°C|
|Metro Cebu||Partly cloudy to cloudy skies with isolated rainshowers or thunderstorms||24°C-29°C|
|Tacloban||Cloudy with rainshowers and thunderstorms||23°C-27°C|
|Cagayan de Oro||Partly cloudy to cloudy skies with isolated rainshowers or thunderstorms||24°C-28°C|
|Metro Davao||Cloudy with rainshowers and thunderstorms||24°C-31°C|
|Zamboanga||Partly cloudy to cloudy skies with isolated rainshowers or thunderstorms||23°C-32°C|
– with reports from Jee Geronimo/Rappler.com
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