Manila, Philippines — According to the latest report by the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA), Typhoon Chedeng is starting to weaken and is moving away from the Philippines. As of 5 a.m., Chedeng was located 990 kilometers east of extreme northern Luzon, packing maximum winds of 130 kilometers per hour near the center and 160 kph gusts. PAGASA stated that Chedeng may exit the Philippine area of responsibility (PAR) by Sunday evening or early Monday morning. It is expected to be downgraded to a severe tropical storm between Sunday and Monday.

Fortunately, this typhoon is not expected to bring heavy rainfall directly to any part of the Philippines. However, it will enhance the southwest monsoon (habagat), which will bring monsoon rains over the western areas of Luzon and Visayas in the next three days. The pull of Chedeng on the southwest monsoon is expected to decrease as it moves away from the country, but the formation of a frontal system north of extreme northern Luzon will continue to enhance the southwest monsoon from Tuesday onwards.

There have been no tropical cyclone wind signals raised in any part of the Philippines. However, gusty winds will still affect several areas including Western Visayas, Ilocos Region, Calabarzon, Mimaropa, Metro Manila, and other parts of Luzon due to the habagat. PAGASA warns that these gusty conditions will continue over most of Luzon from Tuesday onwards as the southwest monsoon is primarily being enhanced by another weather system.

The weakening of Typhoon Chedeng is good news for Filipinos, especially those who reside in areas that are prone to flooding and landslides. The Philippines is constantly battered by strong typhoons every year, which lead to the loss of lives and properties. While the country has made significant strides in disaster preparedness, the government must continue to improve its response mechanism to ensure that its citizens are safe during calamities.

It is also crucial to recognize the importance of weather forecasting agencies such as PAGASA. These agencies provide vital information to the government, which helps them make informed decisions and issue appropriate warnings to the public. The accuracy of their forecasts can save lives and properties, and they must receive adequate funding and support to continue their operations.

At the same time, the government must continue to invest in disaster preparedness and response mechanisms to minimize the impact of natural disasters on the lives of Filipinos. With the collective efforts of both the government and the public, we can build a safer and more resilient Philippines that can withstand even the most severe calamities.