Typhoon Quinta to make landfall in Dinagat Wednesday; 6 provinces under Signal 1

DAVAO CITY (MindaNews/25 December) –  Six provinces along the northeastern part of Mindanao  have been placed under public storm warning signal 1 as the low pressure area spotted east of northern Mindanao on Monday developed into a tropical depression named “Quinta” and is expected to make landfall over the province of Dinagat Islands Wednesday morning, the weather bureau said.

Public storm warning signal number 1 has been hoisted over Leyte and Samar in the Visayas and in Mindanao — the island provinces of Dinagat and Camiguin and the mainland provinces of   Surigao del Norte, Surigao del Sur, Agusan del Sur and Agusan del Norte.

Philippine Atmospheric Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) warned residents living in low lying and mountainous areas under Signal 1 gainst possible flashfloods and landslides.

Quinta is the second typhoon to hit Mindanao in three weeks after super typhoon Pablo battered Davao Oriental, Compostela Valley and portions of Agusan del Sur, Surigao del Sur and Bukidnon on December 4 and the third in 12 months after Typhoon Sendong struck the cities of Cagayan de Oro and Iligan City and portions of Bukidnon,

Before Sendong, Pablo and now Quinta, Mindanao had been repeatedly referred to as “typhoon-free” but for the northeastern part.

Pablo left behind 1,067 residents dead, 1,050 of that from Mindanao while Sendong left behind 1,268 residents dead, 1,227 of that from Mindanao.

The Philippine Atmospheric Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA)  in its 5 a.m. December 25 advisory said that at  4 a.m. the center of Tropical Depression Quinta was estimated, based on satellite and surface data at 400 km east of Surigao City.

At 8 a.m. PAGASA said Quinta was spotted 330 kms east of Surigao City; at 9 a.m. it was at 300 kms east of Surigao City or 270 kms east of Guian in Eastern Samar and at 10 a.m. was at 260 kms east of Guiuian, Eastern Samar.

22 days after Pablo

PAGASA said Quinta is expected to make landfall over Dinagat Islands province morning of December 26. Quinta’s arrival comes 22 days after super typhoon Pablo.made landfall in Baganga, Davao Oriental, leaving behind a wide swath of destruction in the coastal towns of Baganga, Cateel and Boston and the mountain towns in Compostela Valley province, Agusan del Sur and portions of the coastal areas of Surigao del Sur.

A day before Pablo struck, PAGASA’s 4 a.m. advisory on December 3 was that the eye of typhoon Pablo was at 700 kilometers southeast of Hinatuan, a coastal town in Surigao del Sur, with “maximum sustained winds of 175 kph and gustiness of up to 210 kph” and was expected to move west northwest at 24 kilometers per hour.

It made landfall at 4:45 .a.m. in Baganga, Davao Oriental.

As of 6 a.m. December 25, the National Disaster Risk Reduction Management Council (NDRRMC) website listed a total of 1,067 dead  due to Typhoon Pablo from 11 regions in the country, 1,050 of them from Mindanao. The hardest hit provinces of  Davao Oriental and Compostela Valley had 1,007 dead, 612 from Compostela Valley and 395 from Davao Oriental.

A total of 834 remain missing, 827 of that from Mindanao.

Packing maximum winds of 55 kph near the center, Quinta is expected to move west at 19 kph and is expected to make landfall over Dinagat Island Wednesday morning, at 50 km east of Cuyo Island by Thursday morning and is expected to be at 200 km northwest of Puerto Prinsesa City, Palawan by Friday.

The estimated rainfall amount is from 5 to 15 mm per hour (moderate – heavy) within the 300 km diameter of  Quinta.

Fishing boats and other small seacrafts are advised not to venture out into the seaboards of Luzon and over the eastern seaboard of Visayas and Mindanao due to Quinta and the northeast monsoon.

Under Signal 1, winds of 30 to 60 kph are to be expected within the next 36 hours.

Also to be expected are the following: twigs and branches of trees may be broken; some banana plants may tilt or land flat on the ground; rice in flowering stage may suffer significant damage; some nipa and cogon houses may be partially unroofed; and sea travel of small seacrafts and fishing boats is risky, PAGASA said.  (Carolyn O. Arguillas/MindaNews)