Rough Luzon seas likely while ‘Jolina’ heads out

MANILA – Sea turbulence may persist in waters off Northern and Central Luzon even while tropical storm ‘Jolina’ (international name ‘Pakhar’) is moving away from the country.

“That’ll make sailing there still dangerous,” said weather forecaster Samuel Duran from Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA).

PAGASA located ‘Jolina’ over Northern Luzon landmass before dawn Saturday, fanning turbulence in seas in the area.

“Such direct effect of ‘Jolina’ will increasingly ease as this storm moves away from landmass, however,” Duran said.

The southwest monsoon or ‘habagat,’ which ‘Jolina’ enhances and “pull” while this storm moves west-northwestwards away from the country, will instead fan sea turbulence in Northern Luzon waters, he said.

PAGASA expects ‘habagat’ to do the same in waters along Central Luzon’s western seaboard.

In its Severe Weather Bulletin 13 released Saturday, PAGASA located ‘Jolina’ at some 120 km west of Sinait municipality in Northern Luzon’s Ilocos Sur province as of 10 a.m.

‘Jolina’ then packed maximum sustained winds of 80 kph near its center and gustiness of up to 95 kph, noted PAGASA.

“The storm accelerated and re-intensified as it continued moving in a west-northwest direction,” PAGASA said.

According to Duran, ‘Jolina’ is no longer over Northern Luzon landmass.

He said ‘Jolina’ is “pulling” the enhanced ‘habagat’ towards Northern Luzon while this storm is moving away from that area.

“The enhanced ‘habagat’ is beginning to fan sea turbulence there,” he said.

On Saturday, PAGASA warned about possible rough to very rough seas and waves up to 4.5 meters high from ‘Jolina’-enhanced strong to gale-force winds expected in Northern Luzon’s Batanes province, Calayan and Babuyan islands as well as northern coast of Cagayan province.

“Fishing boats and other small seacraft are advised not to venture out into sea while larger sea vessels are alerted against big waves,” PAGASA said in its 10 a.m. Gale Warning released Saturday.

Rough to very rough seas and waves up to 4.5 meters high are also likely along Central Luzon’s west-lying Zambales and Bataan provinces due to expected strong to gale-force winds associated with ‘Jolina’-enhanced ‘habagat,’ PAGASA noted.

PAGASA cautioned small seacraft against sailing in such seas and alerted larger sea vessels about waves expected there.

‘Jolina’ moved from landmass to water around 5 a.m. Saturday, noted PAGASA weather forecaster Jun Galang.

“We expect ‘Jolina’ to exit Philippine Area of Responsibility between 4 p.m. and 7 p.m. this Saturday,” he said.

If ‘Jolina’ maintain its west-northwest direction, he said this storm would likely hit southern Hong Kong.

Hong Kong is reeling from the brunt of ‘Hato,’ the tropical cyclone which left the Philippines earlier this month as a severe tropical storm locally named ‘Isang.’