As of August 2019, for the Pacific typhoon season of this year, of all the significant weather disturbances that have entered the Philippine Area of Responsibility and been given names by the PAGASA weather bureau, none have made landfall on the archipelago at all since Tropical Depression Chedeng last March. Since then there have been nothing but close calls for the islands barring the brief shave of Tropical Storm Falcon (international name Danas) at Cagayan province on July 17. The latest disturbance, Severe Tropical Storm Hanna, will also not land but has gathered strength along its path east of Luzon.
GMA News reports that Tropical Storm Hanna, internationally known as Lekima, is moving slowly in a westward direction this morning of Tuesday, August 6, due east from the Cagayan coast in Region II. Measurements by the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) have the forming eye of Hanna to be 810 kilometers to the east away from the municipality of Aparri as of 10 AM. It maximum winds were estimated at 85 km/h with no less than 105 km/h of gustiness. And while the weather bureau does not see Hanna landing on Philippine soil again, they have forecast it developing into a Severe Tropical Storm, which it did.
Before noon, a PAGASA weather advisory forecast medium to heavy monsoon rains in parts of Regions IVB – MIMAROPA and VI – Western Visayas, from Aklan and Antique to Mindoro and Palawan. This is an important advisory considering how it was allegedly localized squalls generated by the monsoon that caused the tragic capsizing of three passenger pump-boat ferries between Iloilo and Guimaras just this past weekend. Elsewhere, dark skies with rain showers and occasional thunderstorms were expected at any time of the day through most of Luzon and all of Metro Manila.
As for Hanna, the Severe Tropical Storm has been noted to move very slowly, and PAGASA estimates that it will not leave the Philippine Area of Responsibility (PAR) until the evening of Friday, August 9. Until then, it would be interacting with the southwest monsoon to make the early part of the month a wet and dreary one. The weather agency also took note of a new low-pressure area forming outside the PAR, still a good 2,525 east from the northern end of Luzon. Maximum winds are already at 45 km/h with, 55 km/h gustiness.
Image courtesy of ABS-CBN News