Super Typhoon Jelawat (Bagyong Lawin) remains a very strong system as it slowly moves northward east of Luzon. It was last located approximately 580km east northeast of Casiguran, Aurora. Maximum sustained winds remain at 260kph with gusts of up to 315kph. Jelawat is moving north northwestward at 10kph.
As of 5pm this afternoon, PAGASA has issued Public Storm Warning Signal #1 for Cagayan, Isabela, Calayan, and Babuyan Group of Islands. These areas should expect strong winds of up to 60kph to occur in the next 24 hours.
IR Image from NRLMRY
Latest satellite image shows the well-defined eye of Jelawat surrounded by very strong convective activity. Outflow channels continue to remain vigorous as well and helping the system ventilate. Further satellite analysis suggest that an eyewall replacement cycle may, once again, begin in the next 12 to 24 hours. Microwave data (not included here) shows an outer ring of convection trying to form; it's not expected to weaken the system, though, until tomorrow.
The infra-red image above also shows the outer rain bands from Jelawat continuing to bring scattered rains across Southern Luzon and parts of Visayas. The typhoon is also enhancing that Southwest Monsoon (Hanging Habagat) leading to scattered to widespread rains across Palawan, Visayas, and parts of Mindanao. The surge of the monsoon is also bringing rough waves along the western seaboard of the country; in fact, a ship in Zamboanga was washed ashore because of the strong waves, destroying several homes. Rains and breezy conditions will continue for these parts and should slowly move northward eventually bringing widespread rains across Luzon including Manila in the next 2 to 3 days. We also want to mention that some of these thunderstorms could spawn a weak tornado as was reported in Quezon City yesterday.
Forecast Track (NOT OFFICIAL!)
Jelawat is forecast to maintain that Category 5 Intensity through tomorrow. We still have to wait and see whether that eyewall replacement cycle is indeed happening. By tomorrow afternoon (Wednesday), we expect Jelawat to start weakening and could lose that Super Typhoon intensity. By late Wednesday, we expect the system to turn more to the northwest in response to a strong subtropical ridge in Eastern China. By this time, Jelawat could be near enough to bring winds of up to 80kph across extreme Northern Luzon particularly in Cagayan Province. The regions here should also expect widespread rains and rough waves along the coast. Strong winds are forecast for the Babuyan, Batanes, and Calayan Groups of Islands by Thursday. Some areas here could see winds of up to 200kph along with rains of up to 200mm!
There is still some uncertainty as we head into Friday but our current forecast track is taking the middle part of the computer model spread and we are agreeing closely with the Joint Typhoon Warning Center's Track (JTWC). By Thursday morning, we expect Jelawat to turn northward avoiding Taiwan as a mid-latitude trough dives into Eastern Asia. This same trough should pick up the system recurving it to the northeast by Friday. Jelawat should also continuously weaken during this time-frame perhaps becoming a Category 3 by Friday. By Saturday, Jelawat could move near the Okinawa Islands and could be a Category 2 by this time.
Due to the uncertainties in the forecast tracks and steering patterns, as well as the slow movement of Typhoon Jelawat, we've decided to still include Cagayan, much of Taiwan, and the Ryukyu Islands inside our Forecast Cone of Error. This means that areas inside this cone should continue closely monitoring the developments of Jelawat and should prepare now in case the typhoon changes course.
As always though, we also urge you to continue checking your country’s official weather bureau whether it be PAGASA, the Central Weather Bureau in Taiwan, or the Japan Meteorological Agency.
We'll have another update on Jelawat tomorrow morning. Stay safe!
Issued (0930 UTC) 530pm PhT 092512