By: Emme Rose Santiagudo
THE Regional Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Operations Center (RDRRMOC) raised its alert status to blue in preparation for Tropical Depression Usman.
Office of Civil Defense (OCD)-6 officer-in-charge Joseph Paul Nogra made the announcement on December 27, 2018 through Memorandum No. 111, series of 2018.
“The alert status of the RDRRMOC will be raised to blue effective at 5 p.m. In this regard, monitoring and reporting to NDRRMC Operations Center thru RDRRMC-6 OPCEN of any untoward incident or emergency in your Area of Responsibility (AOR) is compulsory,” the memorandum said.
Philippine Atmospheric Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) had raised Typhoon Signal No. 1 over the provinces of Aklan, Capiz, Northern Iloilo, and Northern Negros Occidental as Usman nears the Philippine landmass.
According to PAGASA, Usman may intensify into a Tropical Storm before making a landfall over Eastern Samar on Wednesday.
TD Usman is also expected to traverse Western Visayas today, Dec 28, and moderate to heavy rains, which may trigger flooding and landslides, are expected to prevail over Visayas, PAG-ASA added.
As of 4 p.m. of Dec 27, the center of Usman was estimated at 410 km East of Guiuan, Eastern Samar.
The tropical depression has slowed down while moving generally westward at 10 kph with maximum sustained winds of 55 kph near the center and gustiness of up to 65 kph.
PAGASA added that Usman may exit the Philippine Area of Responsibility between Sunday evening (December 30) and Monday morning (December 31).