10 areas under storm signal as 'Ruby' heads for Eastern Visayas
Louis Bacani (The Philippine Star) - December 4, 2014 - 1:35pm

MANILA, Philippines - Typhoon 'Ruby' is likely to hit Eastern Visayas where provinces have been placed under a storm signal, the state weather bureau said before Thursday noon.

The Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) said in its latest bulletin that the center of the typhoon was located at 860 kilometers east of Surigao City at 10 a.m.

Ruby further intensified as it was packing maximum sustained winds of 195 kilometers per hour (kph) near the center and gustiness of up to 230 kph. It was forecast to move west northwest at 20 kph.

Public storm warning signal no. 1 has been hoisted over Northern Samar, Eastern Samar, Samar, Biliran, Leyte, Southern Leyte, Surigao del Norte including Siargao Island, Surigao del Sur and Dinagat Island.

PAGASA has estimated heavy to intense rainfall amount within the 700-kilometer diameter of the typhoon.

The agency said Ruby is still far to affect any part of the country. However, its combined effect with the enhance northeasterly winds will bring rough to very rough sea conditions over the eastern seaboard of Central and Southern Luzon, over the seaboards of Visayas and over the seaboard of northern and eastern seaboards of Mindanao.

Landfall over Eastern Visayas

In a televised press briefing past 11 a.m., weather forecaster Chris Perez said PAGASA and majority of international weather agencies have the same forecast for Ruby.

"We're expecting Typhoon Ruby to make landfall over the eastern section of Visayas, particularly over Eastern Samar, in the coming days and possibly cross or traverse the Visayas area," Perez said.

Ruby will then exit the Philippine landmass through the Mindoro and Palawan areas, he added.

PAGASA deputy administrator Landrico Dalida said the probability of Ruby making landfall over Eastern Visayas is now higher than 75 percent though there is still a slim chance that it will recurve and miss the Philippine landmass.

"Wala na kaming second scenario. Talagang papunta na lahat sa... almost landfalling na po dito sa eastern part (Eastern Visayas)," Dalida said.

"Mas binibigyang diin po natin ang scenario na posible nga nitong tawirin itong central part of the country," Perez also said.

The Joint Typhoon Warning Center (JTWC) gave a different forecast earlier, saying Ruby may maintain a west northwestward trajectory and then move in a westward track into Southern Luzon.

What to expect from Ruby on Saturday

Perez said Ruby will make landfall over Eastern Samar on Saturday morning or before noon. On this day, the typhoon will start to affect eastern Visayas and Bicol Region.

Meanwhile, the eastern sections of Southern Luzon and Visayas will experience moderate to heavy rains.

Storm surges may also hit the eastern part of Samar, Bicol and Surigao provinces. Low-lying and mountainous areas may also experience flashfloods and landslides, respectively.

Coast waters along the eastern seaboard of Luzon, Visayas, and the northern and eastern seaboards of Mindanao will be rough to very rough and dangerous to all sea vessels.

BICOL AND SURIGAO CENTRAL AND SOUTHERN LUZON CHRIS PEREZ EASTERN EASTERN SAMAR EASTERN VISAYAS GEOPHYSICAL AND ASTRONOMICAL SERVICES ADMINISTRATION JOINT TYPHOON WARNING CENTER PEREZ RUBY VISAYAS
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