While the Asian Games continues apace in Jakarta and Palembang further south in Indonesia, the Philippines seems to be having its own struggles, particularly with the weather. Inclement weather has been the country’s companion week in and week out, with scattered instances of rains, thunderstorms and flooding. And it is not going to end soon, not with word of a new weather disturbance of note entering the country briefly. But its passing already has effects.
CNN Philippines reports that a tropical depression that has been moving to the northwest of Luzon has entered the country’s Area of Responsibility and given the name of “Luis”. Already it has made landfall, not anywhere in the country but in Kaoshiung, Taiwan (which falls within the PAR) on the morning of Thursday, August 23. Indeed, the tropical depression itself will not bother any part of the Philippines, but its presence will do what every other major weather disturbance has done during the rainy season: interact with the precipitation-bringing Southwest Monsoon to generate the expected scattered rain-showers to Luzon, ranging in intensity from moderate to heavy, as the weekend comes.
As PAGASA forecasts it, the most likely affected areas by the Monsoon winds – as whipped up by TD Luis to the northwest – are the provinces of La Union, Ilocos Norte, Ilocos Sur, Batanes, the entirety of the Cordillera Administrative Region (CAR), and the Babuyan Islands of Cagayan Province. Residents of these areas, especially along the lowlands and river channels, and near mountainsides, will once again be advised to be wary of possible flooding and landslides. At the same time, fishermen on the coastal communities, as well as passenger vessels going anywhere along the northern and western seaboards of Luzon, are being notified of very rough seas starting this Friday, August 24, not worth the risks.
As for Thursday, a weather bulletin by PAGASA on the evening of Wednesday, August 22, has forecast light to moderate rains in Central Luzon – Zambales, Tarlac, Bataan and Nueva Ecija. Any rainfall occurring in those areas is expected to last nowhere longer than 2 hours.
In the meantime, Tropical Depression Luis is being plotted at290 kilometers due NNW from Basco in Batanes, moving in an East-Northeasterly direction at 15 kilometers per hour. It is clocked with a maximum 55 km/h in center winds and a gustiness of about 90 km/h.
Image courtesy of PAGASA