The online news portal of TV5
MANILA, Philippines- (UPDATE: 11:44 A.M.) The state weather bureau upgraded the second storm to hit the country into typhoon status Saturday morning as Butchoy gained more strength and increased its diameter while moving closely to land.
The Philippine Atmospheric Geophysical Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) in its 11 am advisory said Typhoon "Butchoy" now packed winds of 120 kph from Friday's 110 kph, with gustiness reaching 150 kph near the center. Its diameter has also increased to 500 km from Friday's 450 km.
As of 10 am, typhoon Butchoy's eye was spotted 470 km east northeast of Borongon, Eastern Samar and has been bringing moderate to heavy rains over Visayas early Saturday.
Butchoy is still expected to enhance the Southwest Monsoon and will continue to bring rains over Luzon and Visayas. The western section of these two areas are warned against possible flashfloods and landslides.
Due to the absence of a visible eye or center, Pagasa delayed the upgrading of Butchoy despite data from the Joint Typhoon Warning Center showing that Butchoy was already a typhoon as of early Friday.
The relatively slow-moving typhoon, travelling at 15 kph north northwest, will still not make landfall but it will pull the southwest monsoon or Habagat to the western part of the Philippines.
Here is Pagasa's three-day forecast of Butchoy's path:
*SUNDAY MORNING: 590 KM East Southeast of Casiguran, Aurora.
*MONDAY MORNING: 500 KM East Southeast of Basco, Batanes.
* TUESDAY MORNING: 690 KM Northeast of Basco, Batanes.
Earlier on Saturday, PAGASA said tropical storm "Butchoy" had maintained its strength but slightly changed course.
In its 5 a.m. bulletin, PAGASA said Butchoy was last seen 480 kilometers east northeast of Guiuan, Eastern Samar with maximum sustained winds of 110 kilometers per hour near the center and gustiness of up to 140 kph.