Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, September 25) — “Karding” reached super typhoon category at 5 a.m. Sunday after a period of “explosive intensification,” the state weather bureau said.
In its 8 a.m. bulletin, the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) said Super Typhoon Karding was last spotted 230 kilometers east of Infanta, Quezon with maximum sustained winds of 185 kph and gustiness up to 230 kph. It was moving westward at 20 kph.
Tropical Cyclone Wind Signal No. 4 is hoisted over Polillo Islands. Typhoon-force winds that have significant to severe threat to life and property may pound the province within 12 hours, the state weather bureau warned.
Pasig, Marikina, Quezon City, San Juan, Mandaluyong, Manila, Navotas, Malabon, Caloocan, and Valenzuela are under Signal No. 3, while the rest of Metro Manila is under Signal No. 2, according to PAGASA.
Signal No. 3 is also raised over the central and southern portions of Aurora, the central and southern portions of Nueva Ecija, Bulacan, the eastern portion of Pampanga, the northern portion of Rizal, the northeastern portion of Laguna, the northern portion of Quezon, and the northern portion of Camarines Norte. These areas may also experience storm-force winds, PAGASA warned.
Signal No. 2 is hoisted over the southern portion of Isabela, Quirino, Nueva Vizcaya, Benguet, La Union, Pangasinan, Zambales, Bataan, Tarlac, the rest of Pampanga, the rest of Nueva Ecija, the rest of Aurora, Cavite, Batangas, the rest of Laguna, the rest of Rizal, the central portions of Quezon, the rest of Camarines Norte, the northern portion of Camarines Sur, and Catanduanes. These areas may experience gale-force winds, the state weather bureau said.
Places under Signal No.1 may also expect strong winds, it added.
Signal No. 1 is up in the southern portion of Cagayan, the rest of Isabela, the southern portion of Apayao, Kalinga, Abra, Mountain Province, Ifugao, the southern portion of Ilocos Norte, Ilocos Sur, the rest of Quezon, the northern portion of Occidental Mindoro including Lubang Islands, the northern portion of Oriental Mindoro, Marinduque, the rest of Camarines Sur, Albay, Sorsogon, Burias Island, and Ticao Island.
The agency also said the most likely highest wind signal that will be raised is Signal No. 5.
Super Typhoon Karding will likely hit land in the northern portion of Quezon or the southern portion of Aurora tonight, PAGASA said. The agency does not rule out a possible landfall or close approach this afternoon in Polillo Islands.
“[I]tong bagyong si Karding posibleng isa ito sa pinakamalakas na bagyong maranasan natin ngayong taong ito [Karding is possibly one of the strongest typhoons we will experience this year],” weather specialist Obed Badrina said in PAGASA’s 5 a.m. update.
He added that Karding may leave the country’s weather monitoring area early Tuesday.
The super typhoon also has strengthened the southwest monsoon or habagat, which will bring rains over the western portions of Visayas and Southern Luzon.
Karding is the 11th tropical cyclone to enter the country this year.
The National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council said “the highest emergency preparedness and response protocol has been activated in Metro Manila, Central Luzon, Calabarzon, Mimaropa, and the Bicol region.”
Meanwhile, the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) assured the public of its preparedness to assist residents who will be affected by Karding, noting that the agency has funds worth ₱1 billion.
“A total of ₱600 plus million ‘yung standby funds, pondo po ‘yan ng DSWD central office at mga field offices natin na maari nating idownload sa mga area na maaring maapektuhan ng si Bagyong Karding. ‘Yung ating quick response fund na maari nating gamit pangtulong kaagad ay nasa higit kalahating bilyon, ₱517 million po,” DSWD spokesperson Romel Lopez said.
[Translation: Our standby funds are worth ₱600 plus million, that’s the fund of the DSWD central office and field offices that we can download for areas that might be affected by Karding. Our quick response fund, which we can use for immediate assistance, is more than half a billion, at ₱517 million.]
Lopez added that family food packs and relief goods are also ready for distribution.
Meanwhile, the provincial disaster office of Isabela told CNN Philippines’ Newsroom Weekend on Saturday that evacuation centers are ready.