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Tropical Depression “Agaton” hits the Philippines, 2 dead in floods and landslides

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Tropical Depression "Agaton" made five landfalls since late Monday afternoon (UTC), January 1, 2018, maintaining its maximum sustained winds at 55 km/h (34 mph) and gusts to 90 km/h (56 mph). The storm is blamed for the deaths of at least two people in Cebu. Agaton is expected to leave the Philippine Area of Responsibility on Thursday, January 4 and head toward southern Vietnam, while weakening.

Tropical Depression "Agaton" triggered floods and landslides in Iligan City, Northern Mindanao on Tuesday, January 2, after it dumped heavy rain over areas still recovering from several tropical cyclones that hit the country over the past 2 weeks.

Floods were reported in parts of Barangay Palao, Hinaplanon, Tubod, TIpanoy, Santiago, Tibanga, Bagong Silang, San Miguel and Tambacan. A portion of C-3 Road in Barangay Tubod was closed around 08:30 UTC (16:30 local time) today after it was hit by mud and debris.

According to local media reports, at least two people were killed in Cebu as Agaton made landfall over the Malabuyoc town in Southern Cebu. One woman (63) died after her house was hit by a landslide. According to police reports, she returned to her evacuated home to pick up some things when the slide buried the house. Another man, aged 39, died after he slipped and fell in Barangay Sto.

After making landfalls over Socorro and Claver, Surigao del Norte; Jagna, Bohol; and Santander, Cebu, Agaton has reached Bais City in the province of Negros Oriental early Tuesday, January 2.

At 02:00 UTC, its center was located 170 km (105 miles) west of Dumaguete City, Negros Oriental and was moving at a speed of 28 km/h (17 mph). By 08:00 UTC, it was 185 km (115 miles) ESE of Puerto Princesa City, Palawan.

Tropical Cyclone Warning Signal (TCWS) #1 is currently in effect for Palawan including Cuyo Island.

Tropical depression Agaton forecast track by PAGASA on January 2, 2019

Tropical Depression Agaton on January 2, 2017

Tropical Depression Agaton on January 2, 2017. Credit: NASA Terra/MODIS

Moderate to heavy rains are expected over the areas with TCWS#1 as well as Bicol Region, Samar provinces, Southern Quezon, Panay Island and the rest of MIMAROPA.

Residents of these areas must undertake precautionary measures against possible flooding and landslides and coordinate with their respective local disaster risk reduction and management offices, PAGASA said.

Sea travel is risky over the areas under TCWS #1 and the seaboards of Northern Luzon and Southern Luzon, the eastern seaboard of Central Luzon, eastern and western seaboards of Visayas, and the eastern seaboard of Mindanao due to the surge of Northeast Monsoon and TD "Agaton".

The storm is expected to leave the Philippine Area of Responsibility on Thursday, January 4 and head toward southern Vietnam, while weakening.

Featured image: Tropical Depression Agaton on January 2, 2017. Credit: NASA Terra/MODIS

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