Tropical Storm Chedeng (international codename Songda) entered Philippine territory before dawn Monday, even as authorities declared themselves ready to deal with its effects.
Philippine Atmospheric Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration forecaster Rene Paciente said their models showed Chedeng may get near the Bicol Region Wednesday and make its way toward northeastern Luzon.
"Sa ngayon hindi pa makakaapekto sa atin sa loob ng 36 hours. Didikit (ito) sa eastern section ng Luzon. Inaasahan natin tatama sa northern Luzon (It will not directly affect any part of the country for the next 36 hours. But we expect it to move towards the eastern section of Luzon and make its way to Northern Luzon)," Paciente said in an interview on dzBB radio.
Paciente said Chedeng entered Philippine territory at about 2 a.m. Monday. He also said they expect Chedeng to continue gathering strength and be a major threat in the next 24 hours.
PAGASA's 5 a.m. advisory said that as of 4 a.m., Chedeng was 880 km east of Guiuan, Eastern Samar, packing maximum sustained winds of 95 kph near the center and gustiness of up to 120 kph.
It was moving west-northwest at 13 kph and is expected to be 620 km east of Guiuan, Eastern Samar. By Wednesday morning, it is expected to be 390 km east northeast of Guiuan, Eastern Samar or 510 km east southeast of Virac, Catanduanes. But it is still possible for Chedeng to change direction and affect other parts of the country, as it is still far from any land mass for now.
"Puwede, malayo pa, lalo na pag mabagal siya (It is possible it can change direction. It is far from any land mass, and it is moving slowly)," Paciente said. Also, he said residents in parts of the country can expect rains while Chedeng is in the country, as it will enhance the southwest monsoon. "Inaashan natin malakas na ulan dahil pagiibayuhin niya ang habagat kaya magkaroon (We can expect heavy rains because it will enhance the southwest monsoon)," he said.
Meanwhile, PAGASA forecaster Robert Sawi told radio dwIZ that the monsoon enhanced by Chedeng will be felt starting Thursday or Friday. PAGASA said that by Thursday morning, Chedeng is expected to be 240 km east northeast of Virac, Cantanduanes. However, no public storm warning signals have been raised so far.
"This weather disturbance is expected not to directly affect any part of the country within the next 24 hours," PAGASA said. On the other hand, PAGASA said that for Monday, the whole countrty will experience mostly cloudy skies with scattered rainshowers and thunderstorms.