Typhoon Rai (PH name: “Odette”) continues to intensify over the West Philippine Sea, said the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical, and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) on Sunday, Dec. 19.



As of 4 a.m., the center of the eye of typhoon Rai was located 320 kilometers (km) northwest of Pag-asa Island, Kalayaan, Palawan outside the Philippine area of responsibility (PAR). It has maximum sustained winds of 195 kilometers per hour (kph) with gustiness of up to 240 kph. It is moving west northwestward at 25 kph.

Tropical cyclone wind signal number 1 remained hoisted in Kalayaan Islands, where strong winds may prevail within 36 hours.

“Typhoon Odette may still intensify within the next 12 hours. Afterwards, the gradual exposure of the typhoon to cooler sea surface temperatures in the northwestern portion of the west Philippine sea, increasing vertical wind shear, and the surge of northeast monsoon will result in a weakening trend,” said PAGASA in its 5 a.m. bulletin.

Typhoon Rai exited PAR on Saturday, Dec. 18 at 12:40 p.m. (Charie Mae F. Abarca)