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Malacañang suspends classes in Metro Manila

August 20, 2008 10:39am

(Updated 11:47 a.m.) MANILA, Philippines – Press Secretary Jesus Dureza on Wednesday morning announced that Malacañang has ordered the suspension of classes for all levels in Metro Manila starting 12 noon.

Radio dzBB reported that this was in anticipation of the rains and winds brought by typhoon "Karen" (Nuri), which is expected to hit northern Luzon Wednesday afternoon.

On Tuesday night, the National Disaster Coordinating Council ordered the suspension of classes for Wednesday in La Union, Pangasinan, Zambales, Tarlac, Bataan, Pampanga, and Bulacan.

For his part, Philippine Atmospheric Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (Pagasa)chief Prisco Nilo said in an interview on radio dzXL on Wednesday that the strong winds and thick clouds may induce tornadoes in some parts of Northern Luzon, particularly the Ilocos region.

"Umaabot ng 170 kilometers per hour yung lakas ng hangin doon, so talagang napakadelikado, napakadamaging ng ganon kalakas na hangin," said Nilo.

"Napakalawak at saka napakakapal ng ulap lalo na don sa northern Luzon pwede ito mag-generate ng tornado lalong lalo na dito sa may gawing gawing Ilocos Norte, Ilocos Sur, La Union," he added.

In a separate television interview, National Disaster Coordinating Council (NDCC) deputy administrator Anthony Golez said that what prompted them to order the suspension of classes were reports from Pagasa that cloudiness and southwest monsoon rains will be scattered across Metro Manila.

"Lumawak po ito (cloudiness) at na-cover ang buong NCR kaninang umaga at 10 a.m. At dahil po dito, nag-pasya na si NDCC chairman Gilbert Teodoro to suspend classes all over Metro Manila," Golez said.

Golez added that any decision to suspend classes in the coming days will be based on the state weather bureau’s regular weather updates.

"Para ngayon lamang po ito. Ang Pagasa naman may regular weather update. At dahil po sa regular weather update nila, dun magpapasya kung ano ang magiging outlook bukas ng umaga," Golez said. - Sophia Dedace, Johanna Camille Sisante, GMANews.TV
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