Tuesday, August 14, 2012

TS Kai-Tak (Helen) Update #7 [LANDFALL]

Tropical Storm Kai-Tak (Bagyong Helen) is now moving along the coast of Cagayan and could make landfall in an hour or two. It was last located approximately 80km east of Tuguegarao City. Maximum sustained winds are now at 100kph with gusts of up to 130kph. Kai-Tak is currently moving northwestward at 15kph.

As of 5am today, PAGASA has raised Public Storm Warning Signal #2 for Cagayan, Isabela, Northern Aurora, Quirino, Nueva Vizcaya, Benguet, Ifugao, Mt. Province, Ilocos Sur, Apayao, Kalinga, Ilocos Norte, Abra, and Calayan-Babuyan-Batanes Groups of Islands. Signal #1 for Nueva Ecija, Tarlac, Pangasinan, La Union, and the Rest of Aurora.

Areas under Signal #2 will have strong winds of up to 100kph. Signal #1 means winds of 30 to 60kph. Along with the strong winds, heavy rain will also impact the said areas throughout today. There could be as much as 200mm of rain in the next 24 hours. PLEASE continue watching the news and coordinate with the local officials for the latest warnings or even evacuation orders in your area.

Microwave Image from NRLMRY

Latest microwave image successfully captured the inner core of Kai-Tak. The blue dot surrounded by green shadings (pointed by the black arrow) indicate the location of the center of the system. It is now along the Coast of Cagayan and could make landfall in an hour. Kai-Tak will continue to move northwestward across Cagayan and could exit near Aparri later tonight.

Compared to yesterday, the system really gained strength quickly as soon as the low-level center (which was partially exposed) moved under the strong convection. The image above suggest that the center is quickly trying to form an eyewall and if it weren't for the proximity to land, this system could've been a typhoon already.

Aside from the rains in Northern Luzon, cyclonic flow is also enhancing widespread rains across Central and Southern Luzon. Radar from NOAH are picking up massive rainclouds moving across Zambales and Bataan and another cluster moving near Cavite and Mindoro. So far, the heaviest of the rains have missed Metro Manila although more rains could impact the region later today. While not as heavy as those in the north, some places here could still pick up 50 to 100mm of rain. For the latest radar images as well as rainfall forecasts in your area, please go to PAGASA'S Project NOAH

Going back to TS Kai-Tak, after exiting Cagayan, it will resume its west northwestward course moving into the South China Sea or West Philippine Sea tomorrow. The sudden change in the movement in the past 12 hours could very well impact the landfall point of Kai-Tak once it gets into Southern China. We'll have our latest updates and forecasts later today.
Issued (23 UTC) 7am PhT 081512

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