Thursday, September 19, 2013

Super Typhoon Usagi (Odette) Update #7

Issued (0030 UTC) 830am PhT 092013

Usagi (Bagyong Odette) remains a very powerful Category 5 Super Typhoon as it moves into the Luzon Strait. The eye of Usagi was last located approximately 380km east southeast of Basco, Batanes; 420km east northeast of Aparri, Cagayan; 700km northeast of Manila; or about 750km southeast of Taipei, Taiwan. Maximum sustained winds remain at 260kph with gusts of up to 315kph. STY Usagi is moving west northwestward at 20kph.

As of 5am this morning, PAGASA has raised Public Storm Warning Signal #3 for Batanes Group of Islands, Signal #2 for Apayao, Cagayan, Calayan and Babuyan Islands; while Signal #1 is in effect for Ilocos Norte, Ilocos Sur, Mt. Province, Ifugao, Abra, Kalinga, and Isabela. Batanes Islands should expect violent and destructive winds today and could last into tomorrow. Provinces under Signal #2 and #1 should also expect winds and widespread heavy rains throughout the day today. We urge everyone living in these areas to continue closely monitoring the developments of this powerful cyclone. Do not forget to consult and follow your local officials' instructions regarding this dangerous weather.

IR Image from NOAA

Latest satellite image shows that the small 30-km eye of Usagi remains intact. However, further satellite analysis suggest that an eyewall replacement cycle is already starting with an outer eyewall beginning to form and wrap around the existing center. For now, though, outer rain bands are beginning to impact Northern Luzon and Batanes Islands. Winds of up to 60kph are already being reported across Aparri and could get stronger throughout the day. The strongest winds will be felt near Batanes Islands where up to 250kph is possible. These wind speeds are highly destructive.

Radar Image from Aparri (PAGASA)

Latest radar image out of Aparri, Cagayan show bands of light to moderate rains moving from the northeast to the southwest affecting not only Cagayan but the rest of Northern Luzon. We could see as much as 100mm of rain falling today with some areas possibly receiving up to 200mm by tomorrow. Flash floods and landslides are possible in mountainous areas so please heed the warnings. For more tropical cyclone update and weather forecasts from PAGASA, click HERE

Forecast Track (NOT OFFICIAL!)

Super Typhoon Usagi (Odette) could slightly weaken today as it undergoes an eyewall replacement cycle. It will continue moving northwestward passing near Basco, Batanes later tonight. Heavy rains and strong winds will affect the islands including Northern Luzon and Southern Taiwan today and into tomorrow. By Sunday, Usagi is forecast to move into the South China Sea (West Philippine Sea) and could weaken further into Category 3. It will remain a dangerous typhoon as it moves near Hong Kong by early Monday morning. After making landfall in Southern China, Usagi is forecast to rapidly weaken but will remain a strong tropical storm through Tuesday next week.

We'll have another update later today.

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