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Signal No. 1 up due to ‘Odette’

The Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical, and Astronomical Services Administration placed at least 11 areas in Luzon under tropical cyclone warning Signal No. 1 as tropical depression “Odette” threatened to make landfall over Cagayan Valley last night.

Signal No. 1 was hoisted over Batanes, Cagayan, Babuyan Group of Islands, Isabela, Apayao, Abra, Kalinga, Mountain Province, Ifugao, Ilocos Norte, and Ilocos Sur.

PAGASA weather forecaster Nikos Peñaranda warned of moderate to heavy rains in these areas, which could trigger landslides over the mountainous areas of Northern Luzon.

Odette was estimated at 540 kilometers east of Tuguegarao City at around 10 a.m. yesterday, with maximum sustained winds of 55 kilometers per hour and gustiness of up to 65 kph, moving west towards Northern Luzon at 30 kph.

Peñaranda said Odette will likely intensify into a storm with maximum sustained winds of 80 kph before its expected landfall last night.

Odette is expected to leave the country’s area of responsibility tomorrow morning.

Meanwhile, the southwest monsoon or “hanging habagat” season is officially over.

Citing recent climate analysis, PAGASA said there was a significant weakening of the southwest monsoon winds over the last few days.

It added that the strengthening of the high pressure systems over the Asian continent has led to the gradual changing of the season from southwest monsoon or to northeast monsoon or “hanging amihan.”