Residents in areas hit by previous typhoons should prepare as tropical depression “Ulysses” may intensify into another typhoon ahead of its landfall over Bicol-Quezon area by Wednesday.
After monitoring tropical storm “Tonyo” (Etau), which had just left the Philippine area of responsibility on Monday morning, the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical, and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) has turned its focus on “Ulysses” since there is a high likelihood of landfall this week.
PAGASA estimated the location of “Ulysses” around 635 kilometers (km) east-northeast of Surigao City, Surigao del Norte, or 605 km east of Borongan City, Eastern Samar around 10 a.m. on Monday.
It has slightly intensified with maximum sustained winds of 55 kilometers per hour (kph) near the center, and gustiness of up to 70 kph.
Weather specialist Chris Perez said “Ulysses” will continue to consolidate while still over the sea and become a stronger tropical cyclone prior to its anticipated landfall.
It is likely to reach the tropical storm category within 24 hours, then a typhoon before its landfall on Wednesday.
A tropical cyclone is classified as a tropical storm once it reaches maximum wind speed of 62 kph to 88 kph, a severe tropical storm with maximum wind speed of 89 kph to 117 kph, and a typhoon if it reaches maximum wind speed of 118 kph to 220 kph.
Based on its projected track, “Ulysses” will generally move northwest until Tuesday morning, then turn west towards Bicol region-Quezon province for a possible landfall by Wednesday.
Tropical cyclone wind signal number 1 may be raised over some of the areas in Bicol region and Eastern Visayas as early as Monday night or Tuesday morning in anticipation of the onset of strong breeze to near gale conditions associated with the approaching weather disturbance.
Perez said PAGASA could possibly raise signal number 2 or 3 depending on the strength of the tropical cyclone.
It is likely that winds and rainfall due to “Ulysses” may begin to affect portions of Eastern Visayas and Bicol region on Tuesday or Wednesday, PAGASA said.
Aside from the Bicol region and Quezon province where the center of “Ulysses” is seen to hit first, Perez advised those within the cyclone track’s “area of probability” to also prepare for its direct impact.
These areas include West Samar, Eastern Samar, Northern Samar, northern portions of Quezon and Aurora, and the southern part of Isabela.
In the next 24 hours, the combined effects of the circulation of “Ulysses” and the prevailing easterlies, or the warm and humid winds coming from the Pacific, may trigger moderate to rough seas over the eastern seaboards of the country.
Perez advised those using small boats to postpone sea travel due to rough sea conditions.
If “Ulysses” remains on course, it will be around 475 km east of Virac, Catanduanes by Tuesday morning; 330 km east of Daet, Camarines Norte by Wednesday morning; in the vicinity of Calamba, Laguna by Thursday morning; and at 420 km west of Subic, Zambales by Saturday morning.
Meanwhile, the tail-end of the cold front may bring moderate to heavy rains with at times intense rains over Cagayan including Babuyan Islands, Isabela, and Aurora.
PAGASA advised residents in areas that are susceptible to flooding and rain-induced landslides to stay vigilant.