Typhoon Chedeng intensifies

MANILA—Typhoon Chedeng  gained more strength as it moved northwest at 15 kilometers per hour and is expected to hit north of Luzon Friday night or Saturday morning.

From being a tropical storm, Chedeng strengthened into a typhoon packing winds of up to 160 kph and gusts of up to 195 kph, the Philippine Atmospheric Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration said in its 5 a.m. bulletin Thursday.

As of 8 a.m., the center of the typhoon was located 240 kilometers northeast of Virac, Catanduanes.

Storm signal number 2 was hoisted over the provinces of Catanduanes, Sorsogon, Albay, Camarines Sur, Camarines Norte and Samar.

Signal number 1 was raised over Cagayan, Isabela, Quirino, Aurora, Quezon including Polillo Island, Marinduque, Burias and Ticao Island, Masbate, Biliran Island and Northern Leyte.

Pagasa said that while the whole of Luzon is expected to experience heavy rainfall due to the southwest monsoon, Metro Manila is least likely to be hit by Chedeng because of the typhoon’s northwest direction.

But the state weather bureau noted the slow movement of the typhoon, which was observed to have exhibited minimal movement for five hours during the day.

Chedeng is the third tropical storm to have entered the Philippines this year and the second for May. At least 18 more are expected to hit the country until December.

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