Heavy rains again threaten the Philippines as the approach of typhoon "Julian" appears to be pulling back "Igme", which was earlier forecast to exit the country by Friday morning, the state weather bureau said late Thursday.
Interaction between the two typhoons is likely to prevent Igme from exiting the country as earlier forecast, Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomic Services Administration (Pagasa) weather forecaster Aldzar Aurelio told Yahoo! Southeast Asia.
"Dahil ito pong dalawang bagyo ay halos magkasinglakas, ang mangyayari po parang seesaw: Kapag gumalaw ang isa northward, southward naman ang kilos nung isa (Since the two typhoons are almost of the same strength, they will have a seesaw effect on each other: If one moves northward, the other will move southward)," Aurelio said.
The phenomenon, which in cases of unequally strong typhoons may result in merging, is also called the Fujiwhara effect.
In its 5 p.m. update, Pagasa said Igme has maintained its strength as it moves closer to Batanes at a speed of 7 kilometers per hour (kph).
The typhoon, which still has maximum sustained winds of 130 kph near the center and gustiness of 160 kph, was spotted at 245 kilometers north northeast of Basco, Batanes at 4 p.m.
Igme was yesterday forecast to move toward Taiwan, but has been affected by the approach of typhoon Julian, Pagasa told Yahoo! Southeast Asia.
Its 5 p.m. update meanwhile said Julian was seen at 1,200 kilometers east of Basco, Batanes at 4 p.m. Thursday. It has maximum sustained winds of 140 kph near the center and gustiness of 170 kph.
The new typhoon is forecast to move west northwest at 11 kph, Pagasa in its update.
The Batanes group of islands remains under public storm warning signal number two due to Igme late Thursday while the signal number one has been raised over the Calayan and Babuyan group of islands.
Moderate to heavy (10 to 20 millimeters per hour) rainfall is estimated within the 500-kilometer diameter of the typhoon.
"Fishing boats and other small seacrafts are advised not to venture out into the Northern and Eastern Seaboards of Luzon due to big waves generated by Typhoon 'Igme,'" Pagasa said.
Igme is also expected to enhance the southwest monsoon that will bring rains over Southern Luzon, Visayas and Mindanao.
"The rest of the country will be mostly cloudy skies with scattered rainshowers and thunderstorms," Pagasa added.