'Auring' may trigger overflow of Mindanao, E. Visayas waterways

By Catherine Teves

February 18, 2021, 7:22 pm

MANILA – Waterways in Mindanao and Eastern Visayas are at risk of overflowing due to rain from approaching Tropical Storm Auring, the weather bureau said Thursday.

"Auring" has not yet struck land but its cloud bands can reach the two areas and bring rain that may affect their waterways, hydrologist of the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA), Edgar dela Cruz, said.

"The cloud bands' rain may raise such waterways' water level and cause these channels to overflow," he said.

Dela Cruz noted that overflowing water could spill into and possibly flood nearby communities so people must prepare accordingly.

As of 5 p.m. Thursday, PAGASA located "Auring" at 635 km. east of Hinatuan, Surigao del Sur, moving northwestward at 10 kph and packing maximum sustained winds of 65 kph near the center and gustiness of up to 80 kph.

Available data shows "Auring" has a diameter of about 300 km., PAGASA weather forecaster Raymond Ordinario said.

"It's a big storm," he said, explaining why the weather system could affect many areas.

PAGASA is not discounting the possibility of "Auring" developing into a severe tropical storm before landfall.

"Auring" may make landfall in Mindanao's Caraga region either Saturday evening or Sunday morning, it said.

Ordinario, however, said "Auring" rain is already possible in Caraga and other eastern sections of Mindanao on Friday.

Eastern Visayas can also experience rains as "Auring" is moving northwestwards, he said.

According to PAGASA, the tropical storm may affect major waterways in Mindanao's Caraga, Zamboanga Peninsula, Northern Mindanao, Davao, and Soccsksargen regions, as well as the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao, aside from those in Eastern Visayas.