As of 5 a.m. (Manila time), the state weather bureau said Metro Manila is now under storm signal number 1. However, classes have been suspended in pre-, primary and high schools in the Metro. Some universities have also announces suspension of classes early Wednesday.
The Department of Education has also declared no classes in both private and public in pre-, primary up to high school levels in areas under storm signal number 2. These include Camarines Norte, Northern Quezon, Rizal, Aurora, Nueva Ecija, Cavite, Lubang Island, Laguna, Batangas, Bataan, Pampanga, Zambales, Tarlac, Pangasinan, Bulacan, and Metro Manila.
Storm signal number 1 has been declared in Catanduanes, Camarines Sur, the rest of Quezon, Marinduque, Nueva Vizcaya, Isabela, Ifugao, Benguet, and La Union. The state weather bureau has lowered storm signal in the rest of the areas hit by the typhoon.
The Philippines braced for the first typhoon of the year as forecasters warned of floods and possible landslides across wide swathes of the country Tuesday. In Manila, stormy weather ahead of typhoon Basyang (Conson) forced schools to close, international flights to divert, and ships to be barred from leaving port.
In a press conference late Tuesday, the state weather bureau said the typhoon will most likely be out of the country Thursday. Packing maximum sustained winds of 120 kilometres (75 miles) per hour near the center and gusting at up to 150 kilometres per hour, Basyang was bearing down on Catanduanes island on the country’s eastern seaboard.
It was expected to cut west after that, dumping up to 20 millimetres (0.8 inches) of rain an hour on Luzon before exiting into the South China Sea on Wednesday, Nilo said.
Afternoon classes in elementary schools in Manila were suspended, while aviation authorities diverted several incoming flights to Clark airport about 80 kilometres (50 miles) north of the capital.
The arrival of Basyang marks the start of this year’s typhoon season for the Philippines. About 20 typhoons slam into the Philippines every year, causing widespread destruction and claiming many lives. Millions of poor Filipinos live in slums alongside rivers and waterways, making them particularly vulnerable to floods.