Scattered rain showers and thunderstorms may continue to affect Southern Luzon, Visayas, and Mindanao due to the low pressure area (LPA) embedded along the intertropical convergence zone (ITCZ), the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) said on Thursday, May 4. As of 3 a.m., the LPA was approximately 130 kilometers southeast of Cuyo, Palawan. PAGASA weather specialist Benison Estareja said the LPA has a “moderate to high” chance of intensifying into a tropical depression. The potential cyclone will be named “Betty” if it becomes a tropical depression while inside the country’s area of responsibility, he said. According to Estareja, the LPA is expected to cross the Sulu Sea and the northern part of mainland Palawan in the next 24 hours. He added that the weather disturbance may still be over the West Philippine Sea on Friday, May 5 and may remain within the country’s area of responsibility until the weekend. Due to the combined effects of the LPA and ITCZ, cloudy weather with scattered rain showers and thunderstorms may prevail over Visayas, Zamboanga Peninsula, Palawan, Romblon, Masbate, Catanduanes, Albay, Sorsogon, Dinagat Islands, Surigao del Norte, and Surigao del Sur in the next 24 hours. Meanwhile, the easterlies or the warm air coming from the Pacific Ocean may continue to bring partly cloudy to cloudy weather with isolated rain showers or thunderstorms over Northern and Central Luzon, including Metro Manila. PAGASA advised the public to exercise caution because severe thunderstorms, which are frequently accompanied by sudden heavy rains, lightning, thunder, gusts of wind, and occasionally hail, can cause flooding or landslides.

Source: Manila Bulletin (