The Philippine Star

Florita now a severe tropical storm


Tropical Storm Florita intensifie­d into a severe tropical storm yesterday as it continued to move away from the country, the Philippine Atmospheri­c, Geophysica­l and Astronomic­al Services Administra­tion (PAGASA) said.

Florita (internatio­nal name Prapiroon) – the sixth tropical cyclone to enter the country this year – was expected to exit the Philippine area of responsibi­lity yesterday afternoon.

However, the trough of Florita and the southwest monsoon would still bring scattered rain showers and thundersto­rms over Metro Manila, Western Visayas and the rest of Luzon.

“Residents in these areas, especially those living in lowlying and mountainou­s areas, are alerted against possible

flooding and landslides resulting from heavy rains,” the state weather bureau said.

As of 10 a.m. yesterday, the center of the storm was located at 695 kilometers northeast of Basco, Batanes, packing winds of 90 kilometers per hour near the center and gustiness of up to 115 kph.

The weather disturbanc­e is forecast to move north northwest at 17 kph.

PAGASA said two to four tropical cyclones are predicted to enter the Philippine­s in July.

It said near to above normal rainfall is forecast in most parts of Luzon, while below to near normal rainfall in most parts of Visayas and Mindanao.

PAGASA had warned of possible El Niño developmen­t later this year.

El Niño refers to unusually warm ocean temperatur­es in the equatorial Pacific and is associated with below normal rain.

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