MANILA, Philippines – A tropical cyclone could enter the Philippine Area of Responsibility (PAR) either on Thursday, October 10, or Friday, October 11.
In a briefing past 4 pm on Sunday, October 6, the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical, and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) said it is monitoring a tropical storm with the international name Hagibis.
Hagibis was previously only a low pressure area (LPA) last Friday, October 4, then developed into a tropical depression and subsequently into a tropical storm.
As of Sunday afternoon, Tropical Storm Hagibis is 3,235 kilometers east of Luzon, moving west at a relatively fast 30 kilometers per hour (km/h).
The tropical storm has maximum winds of 85 km/h and gustiness of up to 105 km/h.
By the time it enters PAR either on Thursday or Friday, it could already be a typhoon, said PAGASA Weather Specialist Gener Quitlong. He added that Hagibis may eventually reach super typhoon status as well, the strongest classification. (READ: FAST FACTS: Tropical cyclones, rainfall advisories)
When Hagibis enters PAR, it will be given the local name Perla. (READ: LIST: PAGASA's names for tropical cyclones in 2019)
Quitlong said initial data show that Hagibis or the potential Perla is unlikely to make landfall in the Philippines, but this scenario could still change since the tropical storm is still very far.
Meanwhile, the LPA that was inside PAR has since made its exit, and is now 645 kilometers west of Sinait, Ilocos Sur.
It weakened into a shallow LPA after hitting extreme Northern Luzon. It is expected to dissipate after hitting the southern part of China, according to Quitlong.
In the meantime, the entire Philippines will have generally fair weather until Monday, October 7, with just isolated rainshowers or localized thunderstorms.
The Philippines has had 15 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.
Below is the estimated number of tropical cyclones from October to December: