Philippine tropical cyclones

Typhoon Ulysses strengthens again as it nears Quezon, Aurora

Acor Arceo
Typhoon Ulysses strengthens again as it nears Quezon, Aurora

Satellite image of Typhoon Ulysses (Vamco) as of November 11, 2020, 2 pm.

Image from NOAA

Typhoon Ulysses (Vamco) has maximum sustained winds of 135 km/h early Wednesday afternoon, November 11, and it has yet to reach its peak intensity

Typhoon Ulysses (Vamco) continued to intensify early Wednesday afternoon, November 11, as it moved closer to the provinces of Quezon and Aurora.

The Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical, and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) said in a bulletin released past 2 pm that Ulysses is now 125 kilometers north northwest of Virac, Catanduanes, or 95 kilometers northeast of Daet, Camarines Norte.

The typhoon maintained its speed, moving west at 20 kilometers per hour (km/h).

It now has maximum sustained winds of 135 km/h from the previous 125 km/h and gustiness of up to 165 km/h from the previous 155 km/h.

PAGASA said Ulysses could reach its peak intensity of up to 155 km/h – referring to maximum sustained winds – before landfall. (READ: FAST FACTS: Tropical cyclones, rainfall advisories)

“Destructive winds and intense with at times torrential rainfall associated with the region of the eyewall and inner rainbands of the typhoon will be experienced over the northern portions of Catanduanes, Camarines Sur, and Camarines Norte until tonight (Wednesday evening) and over Aurora and [the] northern portion of Quezon tonight through tomorrow early morning (early Thursday morning),” PAGASA warned.

These are the areas under tropical cyclone wind signals as of 2 pm on Wednesday.

Signal No. 3
  • southern part of Quirino (Maddela, Nagtipunan)
  • southern part of Nueva Vizcaya (Alfonso Castañeda, Dupax del Norte, Dupax del Sur)
  • Pangasinan
  • Nueva Ecija
  • Aurora
  • Tarlac
  • Zambales
  • Bataan
  • Pampanga
  • Bulacan
  • Metro Manila
  • Rizal
  • Cavite
  • Laguna
  • northern and central parts of Quezon (General Nakar, Infanta, Real, Mauban, Sampaloc, Lucban, Tayabas City, Sariaya, Candelaria, Dolores, Tiaong, San Antonio, Lucena City, Pagbilao, Atimonan, Padre Burgos, Unisan, Agdangan, Gumaca, Plaridel, Pitogo, Macalelon, Lopez, General Luna, Catanauan, Buenavista, Guinayangan, Tagkawayan, Calauag, Quezon, Alabat, Perez) including Polillo Island
  • Batangas
  • Catanduanes
  • Camarines Norte
  • northern part of Camarines Sur (Del Gallego, Ragay, Lupi, Sipocot, Cabusao, Bombon, Calabanga, Tinambac, Siruma, Goa, Lagonoy, San Jose, Garchitorena, Presentacion, Caramoan)
Signal No. 2
  • rest of Quirino
  • rest of Nueva Vizcaya
  • southern part of Benguet (Bokod, Itogon, Tublay, La Trinidad, Sablan, Baguio City, Tuba)
  • southern part of La Union (Burgos, Naguilian, Bauang, Caba, Aringay, Tubao, Pugo, Santo Tomas, Rosario, Agoo)
  • rest of Quezon
  • Marinduque
  • northern part of Occidental Mindoro (Paluan, Abra de Ilog) including Lubang Island
  • northern part of Oriental Mindoro (Pola, Victoria, Naujan, Baco, Calapan City, San Teodoro, Puerto Galera)
  • rest of Camarines Sur
  • Albay
  • Sorsogon
  • Burias and Ticao Islands
Signal No. 1
  • Isabela
  • Kalinga
  • Mountain Province
  • Ifugao
  • rest of Benguet
  • Abra
  • Ilocos Sur
  • rest of La Union
  • rest of Occidental Mindoro
  • rest of Oriental Mindoro
  • Romblon
  • rest of Masbate
  • Northern Samar
  • northern part of Samar (Santo Niño, Almagro, Tagapul-an, Tarangnan, Calbayog City, Santa Margarita, Gandara, Pagsanghan, San Jorge, San Jose de Buan, Matuguinao)
  • northern part of Eastern Samar (Maslog, Dolores, Oras, San Policarpo, Arteche, Jipapad)

When Ulysses passes through, destructive typhoon-force winds will be experienced in areas under Signal No. 3; damaging gale- to storm-force winds in areas under Signal No. 2; and strong breeze to near gale conditions in areas under Signal No. 1.

In the rest of Northern Luzon, there will also be strong breeze to gale-force winds due to the surge of the northeast monsoon or hanging amihan.

In terms of rainfall, PAGASA maintained the following outlook, warning that the rain could cause floods, landslides, and lahar flows.

Wednesday afternoon to evening, November 11

Heavy to intense rain, with at times torrential rain

  • Camarines Norte
  • Camarines Sur
  • Catanduanes

Moderate to heavy rain, with at times intense rain

  • Albay
  • Sorsogon
  • Quezon including Polillo Island
  • Burias and Ticao Islands

Light to moderate rain, with at times heavy rain

  • rest of Luzon
  • Visayas
Wednesday evening, November 11, to early Thursday morning, November 12

Heavy to intense rain, with at times torrential rain

  • Camarines Norte
  • Camarines Sur
  • Metro Manila
  • Calabarzon
  • Aurora
  • Bulacan
  • Pampanga
  • Bataan

Moderate to heavy rain, with at times intense rain

  • Cordillera Administrative Region
  • mainland Cagayan Valley
  • Catanduanes
  • Marinduque
  • northern part of Occidental Mindoro
  • northern part of Oriental Mindoro
  • rest of Central Luzon

Light to moderate rain, with at times heavy rain

  • rest of Luzon
  • Visayas

After passing by waters near Catanduanes, Ulysses will pass over the seas north of Camarines Sur and Camarines Norte between Wednesday afternoon and evening.

Then the typhoon is projected to make landfall in Polillo Island and mainland Quezon between Wednesday evening and early Thursday morning, November 12.

After making landfall, it will cross Central Luzon and emerge over the western seaboard of Zambales on Thursday morning.

PAGASA said Ulysses could slightly weaken as it crosses land “due to frictional effects in the presence of the Sierra Madre and Zambales mountain ranges.” But it is likely to remain a typhoon.

The state weather bureau also warned that there is a high risk of storm surges which “can cause life-threatening and damaging coastal inundation.”

Up to 3 meters high
  • coastal areas of Quezon including Polillo Island, Camarines Norte, and Catanduanes
  • northern and eastern coastal areas of Camarines Sur
Up to 2 meters high
  • coastal areas of La Union, Pangasinan, Isabela, Zambales, Aurora, Bataan, Pampanga, Bulacan, Metro Manila, Cavite, Batangas, northern parts of Oriental Mindoro and Occidental Mindoro including Lubang Island, Marinduque, Romblon, Masbate including Ticao and Burias Islands, Albay, and Sorsogon
  • remaining coastal areas of Camarines Sur

“Moreover, there is also a moderate risk of seiche or storm surge over the coastal areas surrounding Laguna de Bay,” PAGASA said.

Ulysses is also causing rough to very high seas, with waves 2.5 to 10 meters high, in these seaboards:

  • seaboards of areas under Signal Nos. 1, 2, and 3
  • eastern seaboard of Eastern Samar (parts that are not under a tropical cyclone wind signal)

The surge of the northeast monsoon is also triggering rough to high seas, with waves 3 to 6 meters high, in the remaining seaboards of Northern Luzon, and rough seas, with waves 2.5 to 3.5 meters high, in the seaboards of the Kalayaan Islands.

Meanwhile, waters are moderate to rough, with waves 1.5 to 2.5 meters high in these seaboards:

  • western seaboards of Palawan including Calamian Islands
  • eastern seaboards of Mindanao

Ulysses could exit the Philippine Area of Responsibility (PAR) on Friday, November 13.

Forecast track of Typhoon Ulysses (Vamco) as of November 11, 2020, 2 pm.
Image from PAGASA

Ulysses is the Philippines’ 21st tropical cyclone for 2020 – already above the yearly average of 20. (READ: LIST: PAGASA’s names for tropical cyclones in 2020)

For the next 6 months, these are PAGASA’s estimates for tropical cyclones inside PAR:

  • November 2020 – 1 to 3
  • December 2020 – 2 or 3
  • January 2021 – 0 or 1
  • February 2021 – 0 or 1
  • March 2021 – 0 or 1
  • April 2021 – 0 or 1

Since October, La Niña has been underway, which means there is more rain than usual.

Then in November, the northeast monsoon began, signaling “surges of cold temperatures.”

PAGASA warned that La Niña may enhance the northeast monsoon, which could trigger floods and landslides. – Rappler.com

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author

Acor Arceo

Acor Arceo is the head of copy and editorial standards at Rappler. Trained in both online and TV newsrooms, Acor ensures consistency in editorial standards across all sections and also supervises Rappler’s coverage of disasters.