MANILA, Philippines – Only Palawan remained under tropical cyclone wind signals early Friday evening, December 17, with Typhoon Odette (Rai) already over the West Philippine Sea and moving away from land.
Odette was already 85 kilometers north of Puerto Princesa City, Palawan, moving west northwest at a slightly faster 30 kilometers per hour from the previous 25 km/h.
The typhoon is expected to leave the Philippine Area of Responsibility (PAR) either morning or early afternoon of Saturday, December 18. On its way out, it could pass in the vicinity of Kalayaan Islands.
Odette maintained its strength early Friday evening, with maximum sustained winds of 150 km/h and gustiness of up to 205 km/h. At its peak, it had maximum sustained winds of 195 km/h.
The Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical, and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) said Odette is likely to reintensify over the West Philippine Sea, but it may start weakening again on Sunday, December 19, as it “becomes exposed to increasing vertical wind shear and the surge of the northeast monsoon.”
As of 8 pm on Friday, parts of Palawan were still under tropical cyclone wind signals ranging from Signal No. 1 to No. 3.
Signal No. 3 (destructive typhoon-force winds)
- northern portion of Palawan (El Nido, Taytay, Araceli, Dumaran, Roxas, San Vicente, Puerto Princesa City) including Kalayaan Islands
Signal No. 2 (damaging gale- to storm-force winds)
- central part of Palawan (Narra, Sofronio Española, Quezon, Aborlan, Rizal, Brooke’s Point) including Calamian, Cuyo, and Cagayancillo Islands
Signal No. 1 (strong winds)
- rest of Palawan
Several areas in Luzon are still experiencing rain from Odette, while Mindanao and the Visayas are seeing improved weather after being battered by the typhoon.
Friday evening, December 17
- Heavy to torrential rain – Palawan, including Calamian, Cuyo, Cagayancillo Islands
- Moderate to heavy rain, with at times intense rain – Bicol, Quezon, rest of Mimaropa
- Light to moderate rain, with at times heavy rain – Cagayan Valley, Cordillera Administrative Region, Central Luzon, rest of Calabarzon
Saturday, December 18
- Heavy to torrential rain – Kalayaan Islands
- Moderate to heavy rain, with at times intense rain – eastern part of Cagayan, Aurora, Quezon
- Light to moderate rain, with at times heavy rain – Cordillera Administrative Region, Rizal, Bulacan, Bicol, mainland Palawan including Calamian Islands, rest of Cagayan Valley
In coastal areas in Palawan, there could be “coastal flooding due to hazardous surf conditions,” PAGASA also warned.
Moderate to very high seas persist in the seaboards of Palawan as well. Waves are 1.2 to 10 meters high, making travel risky for all vessels.
In addition, a gale warning remains in effect due to Odette and the northeast monsoon or hanging amihan. This gale warning covers coastal waters not under any wind signal in the seaboards of Northern Luzon and in the eastern seaboard of the Philippines. Waters are rough to very rough, with waves 2.8 to 4.5 meters high.
The remaining seaboards of the Philippines not under any wind signal also continue to have moderate to rough seas. Waves are 1.2 to 3.1 meters high and conditions remain risky for small vessels.
Odette made landfall in the country nine times, in these areas:
Thursday, December 16
- Siargao Island, Surigao del Norte – 1:30 pm
- Cagdianao, Dinagat Islands – 3:10 pm
- Liloan, Southern Leyte – 4:50 pm
- Padre Burgos, Southern Leyte – 5:40 pm
- President Carlos P. Garcia, Bohol – 6:30 pm
- Bien Unido, Bohol – 7:30 pm
- Carcar, Cebu – 10 pm
Friday, December 17
- La Libertad, Negros Oriental – 12 am
- Roxas, Palawan – 3:10 pm
The National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council is verifying reports that Odette left at least 12 people dead, 2 injured, and 7 missing.
Cebu Governor Gwendolyn Garcia also declared a state of calamity in the province.
Odette is the Philippines’ 15th tropical cyclone for 2021. Around 20 form within or enter PAR each year.
Here are PAGASA’s estimates for tropical cyclones in the coming months:
- December 2021 – 1 or 2
- January 2022 – 0 or 1
- February 2022 – 0 or 1
- March 2022 – 0 or 1
- April 2022 – 0 or 1
- May 2022 – 1 or 2