Possible new storm in PAR this weekend

MANILA — A tropical depression east of the country may intensify and enter the Philippine Area of Responsibility (PAR) either Saturday evening or early Sunday, threatening Northern Luzon.

“That depression will probably enter PAR as a storm already,” Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) weather forecasting chief Robert Sawi said Thursday during a forum in Metro Manila.

He said PAGASA will name the weather system ‘Helen’ once it is inside the PAR.

Sawi urged communities concerned to prepare accordingly as PAGASA forecasts ‘Helen’ to head towards Northern Luzon on Sunday and affect the area beginning Monday.

In its tropical cyclone information released Thursday afternoon, PAGASA located the tropical depression at some 1,645 km. east of Mindanao.

The depression packs maximum sustained winds of 55 kph and is moving westwards at 35 kph, the bureau said.

Sawi said ‘Helen’ will almost cross Northern Luzon heading eastwards by Tuesday and be near the PAR border around evening of that day.

PAGASA expects ‘Helen’ to exit PAR by Wednesday, he added. PNA/northboundasia.com