Tropical Storm “Paeng” is forecast to reach severe tropical storm category within 24 hours and may intensify into a typhoon by Saturday, the state weather bureau said Thursday.
“The occurrence of rapid intensification in the next 72 hours is not ruled out,” the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical, and Astronomical Services Administration said.
“Paeng” is forecast to track generally west northwestward over the Philippine Sea through Sunday, while moving towards the central or northern portion of Luzon.
More areas in Luzon and Visayas are now under Signal No. 1 as the storm maintained its strength while slowly moving southwestward.
Classes on Friday have been suspended in some areas due to the expected effects of the tropical storm.
Camarines Sur including Naga City declared all levels, in public and private schools, suspended, as well as Quezon Province except Lucena City.
Gandara, Samar declared elementary and secondary levels in both public and private school suspended.
In its 5 p.m. tropical cyclone bulletin, PAGASA said Signal No. 1 was raised in Luzon over the eastern portion of Camarines Sur, Catanduanes, Albay, Sorsogon, and Masbate including Ticao Island and Burias Island.
In the Visayas, the signal was also up over Eastern Samar, Northern Samar, Samar Province, Biliran, and the northern portion of Leyte.
These areas have strong winds prevailing or expected within 36 hours, which may cause a minimal to minor threat to life and property, PAGASA said.
On the forecast track, it may pass close to Catanduanes on Saturday and a landfall scenario is possible on Sunday within any of the coastal areas along the eastern portions of Central Luzon or mainland Cagayan Valley.
The center of “Paeng” was estimated yesterday at 540 kilometers east of Borongan City, Eastern Samar.
It was moving west southwestward at 10 km/h, packing maximum sustained winds of 65 km/h near the center and gustiness of up to 80 km/h.
“Considering the southward shift in the forecast track, a possible landfall in the eastern portion of [the] Bicol Region is not ruled out at this time,” it added.
From Friday early morning through evening, moderate to heavy with at times intense rains likely over Bicol Region, Eastern Visayas.
Mimaropa, BARMM, Zamboanga Peninsula, Northern Mindanao, Caraga, Quezon, Cagayan, Isabela, Apayao, Aurora, and the rest of Visayas may experience light to moderate with at times heavy rains.
From Friday evening through Saturday, heavy to torrential rains are possible over Bicol Region, Northern Samar, Marinduque, and Quezon.
Metro Manila, Western Visayas, Aurora, Bulacan, Mindoro Provinces, Romblon, the eastern portions of Cagayan and Isabela, and the rest of Eastern Visayas and Calabarzon will have moderate to heavy with at times intense rains.
Light to moderate with at times heavy rains are likewise possible over Cordillera Administrative Region, Zamboanga Peninsula, BARMM, and the rest of Visayas, Cagayan Valley, Central Luzon, and Mimaropa.
Due to the shear line and the trough of Paeng, heavy rains are possible over Visayas, most of Southern Luzon, and the northern portion of Mindanao.
PAGASA said the highest wind signal that will likely be hoisted is Wind Signal No. 4, in anticipation of typhoon-force conditions associated with Paeng.
The surge of the Northeast Monsoon (Amihan) will also bring strong winds with gusts reaching gale-force strength over Batanes, Babuyan Islands, Quezon, Bicol Region, Marinduque, Romblon, and the northern portions of mainland Cagayan, Apayao, and Ilocos Norte in the next 24 hours.
There is minimal to moderate risk of storm surge of up to two meters in height which may cause flooding in the low-lying coastal areas of Catanduanes and in some coastal areas of Camarines Sur, PAGASA added.
A marine gale warning is in effect over the seaboards of Northern Luzon and the eastern seaboards of Central Luzon, Southern Luzon, and Visayas under the influence of the surge of the Northeast Monsoon.
Moreover, the combined effects of the surge of the Northeast Monsoon and the approaching tropical cyclone may also bring moderate to rough seas (1.5 to 3.5 meters) over the eastern seaboard of Mindanao in the next 24 hours.
“These conditions may be risky for those using small seacrafts. Mariners are advised to take precautionary measures when venturing out to sea and, if possible, avoid navigating in these conditions,” PAGASA said.