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Friday, October 23, 2009

Tropical Storm Lupit (Ramil) shifts to the north

Lupit has now diminished to a tropical storm and has taken the shift in its path to the north as predicted by AccuWeather and others yesterday. This storm track will result in only a small portion of Luzon being hit while most of the rain is concentrated further north.

Tropical storm Ramil shifts path (Business World Online)

TROPICAL STORM Ramil (international name: Lupit), interacting with two weather disturbances, has changed anew its path and may only hit islands off northern Luzon, the weather bureau said Friday, giving a breather to storm-weary residents.

The Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical & Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA), in its 4 p.m. report, said two high pressure areas over the Philippine and South China seas have weakened the howler and slowed down its movement.

With a slightly changing path that may even skirt the tip of Northern Luzon, Ramil’s peak winds have slowed down to 105 kilometers per hour (kph) with gusts of 135 kph. Almost remaining stationary, it is forecast at 105 km east of Aparri, Cagayan Saturday afternoon, 115 km northeast of the provincial capitol Sunday afternoon and 140 km north-northeast Monday morning.

Signal 3 remains hoisted over the provinces of Batanes, Cagayan, Apayao, Ilocos Norte and the islands of Babuyan and Calayan; signal 2 covers Abra Ilocos Sur, Kalinga, Isabela and Mountain Province; and signal 1 is over La Union, Benguet, Ifugao, Nueva Vizcaya, Quirino and northern Aurora.

Flooding is still likely as 25 mm - 200 mm or more of rain fall on the islands of Bubuyan and Cagayan. Rain fall amounts from this storm are shown in teh latest eTRAP graphic from NOAA:

Tropical storm Lupit brings flooding to Ilan (Taiwan News)

Despite the storm’s slow progress, rain caused flooding in Ilan City, causing traffic problems. In the Ilan County township of Toucheng, 250 teachers and students at a school were forced to move to other classrooms as the first floor was flooded.

Taipei’s Shuanghsi area recorded the most rainfall, 400mm for the period from Thursday morning to yesterday afternoon or 274mm for the first 14 hours of Friday. During the same period, Toucheng in Ilan County recorded 267mm and Pinglin in Taipei County 219mm.

More than 300 people left Green Island for Taitung yesterday morning ahead of a suspension of ferry services between the two from 10:00 a.m. until the end of the weekend, reports said. More remote Orchid Island ordered all schools and offices closed yesterday.

Lupit was originally thought to move across the Northern Philippines in the direction of China, but Taiwan’s Central Weather Bureau was the first to suggest it could stay above the Philippines and then make a right turn to move northeast toward Japan.

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