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Typhoon Ondoy battered most of Central Luzon and the National Capital Region (NCR) today with heavy rains causing huge flooding in most areas of Metro Manila in the Philippines.

With winds of up to 85 kilometers per hour and gustiness at up to 100 kph, Ondoy devastated more than 30 areas, including Metro Manila, while it inches closer to Central Luzon.

The Philippine weather bureau PAGASA (Philippine Atmospheric Geophysical and Astronomical Administration) said that Ondoy was spotted 130 kilometers southeast of Baler town in Aurora province or 90 kilometers east northeast of Quezon province.

Due to heavy rains brought by the typhoon, major throughfares in the metropolis were submerged with flood waters as high as neck-deep. In the financial district of Makati, flood waters affected the whole stretch of Buendia avenue and most barangays.

Public storm warnings were hoisted in most of Luzon, with Signal no. 2 over La Union, Pangasinan, Benguet, Nueva Vizcaya, Quirino, Aurora, Nueva Ecija, Pampanga, Tarlac, Zambales, Bulacan, northern part of Quezon, Polillo Island, Camarines Norte and Rizal.

Signal No. 1 was raised over Isabela, Mt. Province, Ifugao, Ilocos Sur, Bataan, Cavite, Laguna, Batangas, Marinduque, Mindoro provinces, Lubang Island, southern part of Quezon, Camarines Sur, Albay, Burias Island, and Metro Manila. Even at Signal no. 1, Metro Manila went underwater, with most areas affected by massive floods as high as neck-deep.

PAGASA said they expect a heavier volume of rain since Ondoy is expected to enhance the southwest monsoon and bring rains over the central and southern parts of Luzon, as well as the Visayas regions. Over at DZMM, Nathaniel Cruz, PAGASA’s chief weather forecaster, said they expect Ondoy to cross Luzon while on its way to South China Sea.

Cruz said Ondoy may make landfall in Aurora province on Saturday morning and touch Pangasinan at night time before heading back to the sea.

“Inaasahan ho nating dumaan ito sa Luzon sa buong maghapon,” the weather forecaster told radio dzMM.

The weather bureau has also advised the Philippine Coast Guard to stop fishing boats and other small seacrafts from sailing in the affected areas.

The advisory has left more than 1,000 passengers stranded in southern Luzon and Bicol ports.

PAGASA has also alerted the National Disaster Coordinating Council for possible flashfloods and landslides in the affected areas, partcularly in Laguna, Quezon, Zambales, Pampanga and Bataan provinces.

Meanwhile, the Manila International Airport Authority said 13 flights of Zest Air SeaAir and PAL Express to Caticlan, Basco town in Batanes, San Jose town in Mindoro and Tablas in Romblon have been cancelled due to bad weather.

(with reports from www.abs-cbnnews.com)