The low pressure area (LPA) east of Luzon developed into a tropical depression on Tuesday prior to its entry into the Philippine area of responsibility (PAR), and is initially forecast to approach Bicol-Eastern Visayas towards the weekend, according to the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA).
PAGASA last spotted the tropical depression at 2,125 kilometers east of Central Luzon or still outside the PAR around 4 p.m. It will likely enter the PAR by Wednesday evening or Thursday.
Once inside the country’s area of monitoring, it will get the local name “Rolly,” the fifth cyclone this month after “Nika,” “Ofel,” “Pepito,” and “Quinta.”
As of Tuesday afternoon, the tropical depression has maximum sustained winds of 45 kilometers per hour (kph) and gustiness up to 55 kph, moving north-northwest at 15 kph.
Based on its initial forecast track, PAGASA said the tropical depression would move northwest or west-northwest from Tuesday until Thursday, then southwest by Friday towards Bicol Region-Eastern Visayas area.
It may also intensify further and become a tropical storm with maximum wind speed of 62 kph to 88 kph in the next 72 hours.
The cyclone has no direct effect yet over the country as of Tuesday, but its initial effect may be felt more likely towards the end of this week.
If its initial track is sustained, PAGASA said the tropical depression will be at 1,875 km east of Central Luzon by Wednesday afternoon; 1,440 km east of Central Luzon by Thursday afternoon; 1,030 km east of Southern Luzon as a tropical storm by Friday afternoon; and at 315 km east of Virac, Catanduanes as a severe tropical by Saturday afternoon.