Tropical cyclone Mawar has re-intensified into a super typhoon as it moves across the Pacific Ocean toward the country’s area of responsibility, the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) said on Thursday morning, May 25. Based on PAGASA’s 5 a.m. tropical cyclone advisory, Mawar was packing maximum sustained winds of 185 kilometers per hour (kph) near the center and gusts as high as 230 kph. PAGASA weather specialist Benison Estareja said the super typhoon may further intensify and reach a peak intensity of 215 kph on Saturday, May 27. Mawar was last spotted approximately 2,150 kilometers east of southern Luzon or still outside the Philippine area of responsibility (PAR). Should it continue moving west-northwestward at 15 kph, the typhoon will be inside the PAR between Friday evening and early Saturday morning, May 26 and 27, and will be given the local name “Betty.” ![IMG_2756.jpeg]( ###### (Courtesy of PAGASA)
**What to expect** As of Thursday, Mawar has no direct effect to the Philippines yet but rains due to the southwesterly wind flow may persist in the western sections of Southern Luzon, Visayas, and Mindanao in the next two days, Estareja said. He pointed out that the direct effect of the weather disturbance will be felt gradually by Saturday. “Mawar may enhance the southwest monsoon (habagat) and trigger monsoon rains over the western portions of Mimaropa, Visayas, and Mindanao on Friday and Saturday, and over the western portions of Luzon and Visayas on Sunday until the middle of next week,” Estareja said. Given Mawar’s large circulation of 780 kilometers, Estareja said the typhoon's rainbands could cause moderate to intense rains in Cagayan Valley from Sunday to Tuesday, May 28 to 30, and that a tropical cyclone wind signal could be issued in the region as early as Saturday. “The forecast confidence cone and the slightly southward shift in the model solutions suggest that the potential for a much closer approach to the country than the ones shown by the center track is not ruled out,” PAGASA said.

Source: Manila Bulletin (