Tropical Storm Washi is now intensifying over the Philippine Sea and could make landfall in Mindanao as early as tomorrow afternoon (Philippine Time). The storm center was last located approximately 750km east northeast of Davao City, Philippines. Maximum winds now range from 65 to around 90kph. Washi is moving westward at a fairly quick pace of 30kph.
Due to the impending threat, PAGASA has released Signal Warnings for numerous provinces and islands in Visayas and Mindanao. You can view those warnings by clicking the “PAGASA” link on our homepage.
Washi moved across Palau earlier today although winds recorded in the island only maxed to about 50kph (with a minimum pressure of 1002mb in Koror). However, recent satellite trends suggest a quicker intensification rate maybe happening as it maximizes the warm sea temperatures east of the Philippines.
Despite the recent developments, JTWC have scaled down their intensity forecast and is no longer expecting Washi to become a typhoon. Nevertheless, the storm will still be dangerous as it hits Mindanao. As per the track forecast, Washi will move across Central Visayas and exit into Sulu Sea by Saturday morning. It will then cross Palawan by Saturday night and eventually leave the Philippine Area of Responsibility by Sunday. Long term forecasts take Washi into Vietnam by early next week.
JTWC Forecast Graphic
Meanwhile, Invest 96W continues to spin in the Pacific although it still has a LOW chance of becoming a cyclone. It is currently embedded along the ITCZ and conditions are somewhat favorable for development. Models are not really picking up on this storm yet so stay tuned here for future developments.
IR Image from NOAA showing the locations of TS Washi and Invest 96W