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Pagasa: Ramil to make landfall late Friday or early Saturday

October 23, 2009 7:57am
Typhoon Ramil (Lupit) is to make landfall over Northern Luzon late Friday or early Saturday, and will likely stay over Northern Luzon during the weekend, state weather forecasters said Friday.

Philippine Atmospheric Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (Pagasa) head Prisco Nilo said "Ramil" may need more than a day to cross north Luzon.

"Mga halos aabutin ng more than one day bago siya makakalayo sa kalupaan ng Northern Luzon ... Magtatagal na bago makakalabas ng Philippine area of responsibility (It may need more than a day before it finishes crossing Northern Luzon's land mass. It will take a long time before it exits the Philippine area of responsibility)," Nilo said in an interview on dwIZ radio.

He said that given its present speed and course, Ramil is likely to make landfall on Cagayan at midnight or early Saturday.

"Mga bandang midnight kung magpapatuloy na mabagal ang kilos niya. Medyo may kalakasan ang hangin at malakas ang ulan sa malapit sa sentro ng bagyo (It will hit at midnight and then slow down after making landfall. The winds and rains will be considerable)," he said in a separate interview on dzBB radio.

But Nilo also maintained Pagasa's data is more accurate than those of foreign weather agencies, saying Pagasa has access to ground data while the others rely on satellite data.

The Japan Meteorological Agency's 5:40 a.m. forecast indicated that Ramil may veer away northeast and head for Taiwan.

But its forecast also indicated winds from Ramil may affect Northern and Central Luzon.

It also said the storm warning area will be 430 km for Saturday, and 540 km for Sunday.

"Meron kaming data every hour sa lahat na field stations namin, sila hindi available sa kanila ang every hour na data (We have access to hourly data that the other agencies do not)," Nilo said.

Ramil's location

A comparison of the Ramil's possible paths predicted by Pagasa, the Japan Meteorological Agency, and the Joint Typhoon Warning Center, as of early Thursday morning.
In an advisory issued at 5 a.m., Pagasa Ramil, packing maximum sustained winds of 120 koh near its center with gustiness of up to 150 kph, was estimated at 130 km east of Aparri, Cagayan.

It said Ramil was moving west slowly and is expected to be 70 km east of Aparri, Cagayan, and in the vicinity of Aparri Sunday morning. By Monday morning, Ramil is expected to be 90 km west of Aparri, Cagayan or at 40 km north of Laoag City.

Pagasa placed the Batanes Group of Islands, Cagayan, Calayan Island, Babuyan Islands, Apayao, and Ilocos Norte under storm signal No. 3 (where the strength of winds range from 101 kph-185 kph).

Areas under storm signal No. 2 (60-100 kph winds) are Abra, Ilocos Sur, Kalinga, Isabela, and Mt. Province, while those under signal no. 1 (30-60 kph winds) are La Union, Benguet, Ifugao, Nueva Vizcaya, Quirino, and Northern Aurora.

As in previous advisories, Pagasa reminded residents in low-lying areas and near mountain slopes under storm signals to take precautions against possible flashfloods and landslides.

It also reminded those living along the coast in areas under signals #2 and #3 against storm surge and big waves generated by the typhoon.

Preparations, prayers

As early as late last week, various government agencies and the local government units of areas expected to be hit by Ramil have been busy in preparing for the coming of the latest cyclone to enter the country: stocking up on food, water and medicines, moving residents to higher areas and readying rescue equipment in anticipation of floods and landslides.

On Thursday, President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo called on Filipinos to pray that the calamity-stricken Philippines be spared from further devastation. [See: Arroyo calls for prayers as ‘Ramil’ slows down and weakens]

"Bagamat maganda ang umaga ngayon, hayaan niyong manawagan na muna ako sa inyo para sa lahat na tayo ay magdasal para sa ating taongbayan sa buong Luzon. Unang una yuong mga nawalaan ng mga minamahal na tahanan at pag-aari, at para rin sa mga nawawalaan ng pag-asa sa kinabukasan dahil sa mga kalamidad ng kalikasan," President Arroyo said in her address before a tourism summit in Batangas City that day.

On Tuesday, the Roman Catholic Church published a full-page prayer for deliverance from typhoons in a national broadsheet. The prayer lamented that "global warming is upon us" and the asked God to spare Filipinos "from the threat of calamities, natural and man-made." [See: Prayers offered as typhoon Ramil nears RP] - GMANews.TV
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