Betty intensifies over Northern Luzon, Signal No.1 raised

Super Typhoon Betty, internationally known as Mawar, is intensifying over Northern Luzon as Tropical Cyclone Wind Signal No.1 is raised over the eastern portion of Cagayan and the eastern portion of Isabela, the state weather bureau said.

In an advisory issued at 11 a.m. on May 27, the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (Pagasa) said that Betty maintains its strength while moving west-northwestward.

The typhoon is expected to bring heavy rainfall early next week, with Batanes, Babuyan Islands, and the northern portions of mainland Cagayan, Ilocos Norte, and Apayao expected to receive 50-100 mm of rainfall from Monday to Tuesday morning.

The center of Super Typhoon Betty was estimated to be 1,170 kilometers east of Central Luzon. The typhoon is moving west-northwestward at 30 kilometers per hour, with maximum sustained winds of 195 km/h near the center and gustiness of up to 240 km/h.

Signal No. 1 is hoisted over the eastern portion of Cagayan (Santa Ana, Gonzaga, Lal-Lo, Gattaran, Baggao, Peñablanca, Santa Teresita, and Buguey) including Babuyan and Camiguin Islands and the eastern portion of Isabela (Maconacon, Divilacan, Dinapigue, Palanan, San Mariano, Ilagan City, Tumauini, San Pablo, and Cabagan).

From Tuesday morning to Wednesday morning, rainfall in Batanes could exceed 200 mm while the Babuyan Islands, Ilocos Norte, Ilocos Sur, and La Union could receive 100-200 mm of rain. The Cordillera Administrative Region and the northern portion of mainland Cagayan are also expected to receive 50-100 mm of rainfall during the same period.

Despite not being directly affected by the typhoon, monsoon rains from the enhanced Southwest Monsoon are expected over the western sections of Mimaropa, Visayas, and Mindanao tomorrow, and over the western sections of Mimaropa and Western Visayas, and possibly the rest of Mimaropa and Western Visayas on Monday and Tuesday.

With these expected conditions, Pagasa warns of potential flooding and rain-induced landslides, especially in areas highly susceptible to these hazards and localities that have experienced substantial rainfall in the past several days.

Strong winds are anticipated in areas where Tropical Cyclone Wind Signal No.1 is currently in effect. The enhanced Southwest Monsoon may also bring strong winds and gusts to Visayas, the eastern parts of Central and Southern Luzon, and the northern and eastern parts of Mindanao starting tomorrow evening.

Mariners of small seacrafts are advised to take precautionary measures as seas along the eastern seaboards of Luzon and Visayas are expected to be moderate to rough over the next 24 hours.

Over the weekend, Super Typhoon Betty is predicted to track west-northwestward. By Monday, it will turn northwestward and decelerate as it moves over the waters east of Extreme Northern Luzon. The typhoon is likely to become almost stationary between late Tuesday and early Wednesday when it will be closest to Batanes.

Although Super Typhoon Betty is expected to remain as a super typhoon over the weekend, it may begin to weaken considerably on Monday or Tuesday due to potential unfavorable conditions.

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