Severe tropical storm “Quinta” (international name “Molave”) is approaching Catanduanes and Albay and could still intensify into a typhoon before its landfall over these areas this afternoon or tonight, the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical, and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) said.
As the tropical cyclone is already close to land, more areas were placed under tropical cyclone wind Signals 1 and 2 in the PAGASA severe weather bulletin issued at 2 p.m. Sunday.
Areas placed under Signal No. 2 were Catanduanes, Camarines Norte, Camarines Sur, Albay, Sorsogon, Masbate, including Burias and Ticao Islands, central and southern portions of Quezon (Mauban, Sampaloc, Lucban, Dolores, Candelaria, Tiaong, San Antonio, Sariaya, Tayabas City, Lucena City, Pagbilao, Atimonan, Perez, Alabat, Calauag, Quezon, Tagkawayan, Guinayangan, Lopez, Pitogo, Plaridel, Gumaca, Unisan, Agdangan, Padre Burgos, Macalelon, Catanauan, Gen. Luna, Buenavista, San Narciso, Mulanay, San Andres, and San Francisco), southeastern portion of Laguna (Paete, Kalayaan, Lumban, Cavinti, Luisiana, Majayjay, Liliw, Rizal, Nagcarlan, San Pablo City, Alaminos, Magdalena, and Pagsanjan), Batangas, Marinduque, Romblon, Oriental Mindoro, Occidental Mindoro, including Lubang Island, and Northern Samar.
Stormy conditions will be experienced in these areas within 24 hours.
Areas under Signal No. 1 were the rest of Quezon and Laguna, Rizal, Cavite, Metro Manila, Bulacan, Pampanga, Bataan, southern part of Zambales (San Marcelino, San Felipe, San Narciso, Castillejos, Subic, San Antonio, Olongapo City, Botolan, and Cabangan), Calamian Islands, northern part of Samar (Calbayog City, Matuguinao, Tagapul-an, Sto. Nino, Almagro, Sta. Margarita, Gandara, San Jose de Buan, Pagsanghan, Tarangnan, San Jorge, Catbalogan City, Jiabong, Motiong, and Paranas), northern part of Eastern Samar (Maslog, Jipapad, Arteche, San Policarpo, Oras, Dolores, Can-Avid, and Taft), northern part of Capiz (Sapi-An, Ivisan, Roxas City, Panay, Pilar, Pontevedra, and President Roxas), Aklan, northern part of Antique (Caluya, Libertad, Pandan, Sebaste, and Culasi), and northeastern part of Iloilo (Batad, Balasan, Estancia, and Carles).
These areas may begin to experience 30 to 60 kph winds or intermittent rains within 36 hours.
PAGASA last spotted Quinta at 95 kilometers east of Virac, Catanduanes at 1 p.m. Sunday, moving at 25 kph, further intensifying with maximum sustained winds of 110 kph and gustiness of up to 135 kph.
Quinta may continue to move generally west until its landfall over the Catanduanes-Albay area between this afternoon and tonight.
After its landfall, it is seen traverse the Southern Luzon area until Monday afternoon, then turn west-northwest over the West Philippine Sea. It is likely to exit the Philippine Area of Responsibility Tuesday afternoon.
PAGASA is not discounting possible further intensification into a typhoon (with maximum wind speed of 118 to 220 kph) prior to its landfall.
After crossing the Philippine archipelago, the tropical cyclone may continue to intensify over the West Philippine Sea.
PAGASA advised the public to brace for moderate to heavy with at times intense rains over Albay, Catanduanes, Camarines Norte, Camarines Sur, Sorsogon, Masbate, Cavite, Laguna, Batangas, Rizal, Quezon, Aurora, Occidental Mindoro, Oriental Mindoro, Romblon, Marinduque, Calamian Islands, Northern Samar, Eastern Samar, Samar, Biliran, Aklan, and Antique in the next 24 hours.
The tail-end of a frontal system will also bring moderate to heavy with at times intense rains over Cagayan, Isabela, Apayao, and Ilocos Norte.
PAGASA said both weather systems may also cause light to moderate with at times heavy rains over Metro Manila, Palawan, Abra, Benguet, Ifugao, Kalinga, Mountain Province Apayao, Zamboanga Sibugay, Zamboanga del Norte, Zamboanga del Sur, Lanao del Sur, Maguindanao, Basilan, Sulu, Tawi-Tawi, Bukidnon, Camiguin, Misamis Occidental, Misamis Oriental, Lanao del Norte, Agusan del Norte, Agusan del Sur, Surigao del Norte, Surigao del Sur, the rest of Visayas, Cagayan Valley, and Central Luzon.
Weather specialist Ariel Rojas said Metro Manila may begin to feel the impact of Quinta as early as Sunday night, starting with light rains around early evening which then may become moderate to at times heavy from late evening until Monday afternoon.
The State weather bureau warned of possible flooding, rain-induced landslides, or sediment-laden stream flow (lahar) during heavy or prolonged rainfall especially in areas that are highly susceptible to these hazards.
Rojas said authorities have been requested to remove billboards, especially in Metro Manila, due to Quinta’s possible gusty winds.
Possible storm surges, one to two meters high, may also affect the coastal areas of Northern Samar, Bicol region, and the central and southern portions of Quezon.
Rough to very rough sea conditions will also prevail over the entire coastlines of Northern Luzon, with wave heights that may reach 3.0 to 5.5 meters, and seaboards of Aurora, Zambales, northern Palawan, including Calamian and Kalayaan Islands (wave heights from 2.5 to 4.5 meters), and all areas under tropical cyclone signals 1 and 2 (wave heights up to 2.5 to 5.5 meters).
Sea travel is suspended in these areas.
Moderate to rough seas, with waves that may reach 1.2 to 2.8 meters, will prevail over the other coastlines of the country.
PAGASA advised those using small boats to take necessary precautionary measures while venturing out to sea while inexperienced mariners should avoid navigating in these conditions.
Quinta will likely be in the vicinity of Abra de Ilog, Occidental Mindoro Monday morning; 590 kms west of Tanauan City in Batangas by Tuesday morning; and 1,025 kms west of Central Luzon or outside the PAR by Wednesday morning.
Quinta is the 17th cyclone to form this year and fourth in October, following “Nika,” “Ofel,” and “Pepito.”