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Weaker Kai-tak (Urduja) still bringing heavy rain into Visayas and Luzon

Good evening from the Western Pacific Weather team.

The center of Kai-tak is hovering right over Samar as it slowly drifts to the west. While the sea surface temperatures are decently warm, there’s enough resistance to where the storm is not able to fully develop an efficient circulation to maintain any type of momentum. Winds are significantly slower than expected, though there is still plenty of rainfall that is falling. PAGASA Doppler Radar estimates rain rates as high as 10 mm/hr, and the sustained rain pattern will continue to be of concern as we go into the overnight hours.

Plenty of flooding has been reported, including crop damage for those located in the Cebu area. Expect the rain to continue for the central areas of the Philippines, extending as far north as Manila. The rain will likely continue through Sunday and possibly even into Monday for the western areas of the nation. There is a possibility that this system might be weakening further over the next couple of days, but the rain impacts will still be around for the next 24-48 hours.

Jonathan Oh
Meteorologist, Western Pacific Weather

20171216 Saturday 06 UTC Track

Kai-tak (Urduja) still dragging its feet, signal alerts expanding into Mindanao

Good afternoon from the Western Pacific Weather team.

Tropical Storm Kai-tak (Urduja) continues to slowly drift north and west, dumping most of the heaviest rainfall east of Visayas but bringing plenty of precipitation into the region nevertheless. The general track of the system has not changed significantly. Over the weekend, expect the rain to be heaviest in the central Philippines with winds gusting up to 126 kilometers per hour.

PAGASA has expanded the signal alerts to include portions of Mindanao at level 1. While not significant at this level, do expect to see some rough surf and a stiff breeze over the next 48 hours.

Here are the current alerts in place as of 14:00 Philippine Standard Time on 15 December 2017 from PAGASA:

Level #2 – Visayas: Northern Samar, Eastern Samar, Samar, and Biliran
Level #1 –
Luzon: Catanduanes, Camarines Sur, Albay, Sorsogon, Romblon, and Masbate including Burias and Ticao Islands
Visayas: Leyte, Southern Leyte, Northern Cebu, Capiz, Aklan, and Northern Iloilo
Mindanao: Dinagat Islands

The greatest risk for this system will be the intense rainfall. The current trends might keep the maximum amounts at or below 500 millimeters over the next few days, but isolated areas could also exceed that amount. Please make sure to be aware of the weather situation, particularly for those in Visayas as you will be dealing with the greatest extent of the precipitation. Winds will also be strong for the region as gusts will possibly exceed severe tropical storm-force levels.

Jonathan Oh
Meteorologist, Western Pacific Weather

20171215 Kai-tak Track

Signal Alerts issued in central and northern Philippines due to TS Kai-tak (Urduja)

Good afternoon from the Western Pacific Weather team.

Tropical Storm Kai-tak (Urduja) has intensified and is slowly drifting to the south and west. The storm, because of the lack of forward momentum, will cause significant rainfall for central Philippines with additional impacts into both southern and northern areas of the country.

Here are the current PAGASA signal alerts as of 1500 Philippine Standard Time on 14 December 2017:

Signal 2: Visayas – Eastern Samar, Samar, Biliran
Signal 1: Visayas – Northern Samar, Leyte, and Southern Leyte, Northern Cebu including Bantayan Island, Capiz, Aklan and Northern Iloilo; Luzon – Catanduanes, Camarines Sur,Albay, Sorsogon, Masbate and Romblon

The biggest threat with this system is the heavy rainfall. Some locations could see in excess of 500 mm of rainfall, leading to flooding and mudslides. Winds will be the strongest in Visayas and extending into Luzon. While Kai-tak is not expected to become a Severe Tropical Storm, it will likely intensify as the central area of the system prepares to run over land. The storm will not depart from the Philippines until at least Tuesday. Therefore, expect stormy conditions to last through the rest of this week into the first part of next week.

Jonathan Oh
Meteorologist, Western Pacific Weather

20171214 TS Kai-tak

Tropical Depression on course to run over the Philippines

Good afternoon from the Western Pacific Weather team.

Tropical Depression “Urduja” (PAGASA’s nomenclature) is continuing to churn east of Mindanao in the Philippines. While it is not a tropical storm as of this posting, it is expected to become one likely within 24-36 hours. As the storm moves to the north and west, it will only enhance the significant precipitation that Visayas and Mindanao have already seen since Monday. Flooding will continue to be a part of the story along with heavy rainfall, especially for the central areas of the Philippines for the rest of this week.

As the system is likely to intensify as it approaches the islands, expect the impact of the storm to stretch as far north as Manila and Luzon. The intensity depends on the development and the intensification, but at the moment, expect sustained rainfall for the latter half of this week with increasing intensity going toward Friday and the weekend. The peak for heavy rain is likely Saturday for central and southern Philippines and Sunday to Monday for the northern areas of the Philippines.

Jonathan Oh
Meteorologist, Western Pacific Weather

20171213 TD Satellite