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Sendong lashes Agusan Sur, Bukidnon

NAGA CITY (3:00 AM, Dec 17, 2011) - Tropical Storm Sendong (Washi) retains it strength - centerwind of 85 kilometers per hour (kph) and gustiness up to 100 kph. - after crossing Agusan Del Sur and Bukidnon late last night, passing near Cagayan De Oro City.

Strong winds and widespread rains now hit Western Mindanao and Southern Visayas as Sendong moves West Northwest over Iligan Bay at 26 kilometers per hour (kph) towards the province of Misamis Occidental and the cities of Dapitan and Dipolog, which are just about 100 kilometers (km) away.

The center of the storm is located 33 km West of Cagayan De Oro City or 35 km North of Iligan City at coordinates 8.5º N Latitude 124.3º E Longitude.

Sendong also enhances the Northeast Monsoon (aka. Amihan) across Luzon, Bicol and Northern Visayas. where windy conditions, cooler temperatures and cloudy skies and occasional to widespread rains are expected. Rough seas shall prevail along the coastal areas facing the Philippine and Visayan Seas.

The core of the storm shall pass along the northern shores of Misamis Occidental and Zamboanga Del Norte, passing very close to twin cities of Dapitan and Dipolog just before sunrise today (approx. 3-4AM).

It will then move across Sulu Sea this morning and cross the South-Central portion of Palawan by early Sunday morning.

By Sunday evening thru Monday, Sendong shall be moving out Philippine Area of Responsibility (PAR) as it passes over the Spratly Islands.

The Philippine Atmospheric Geophysical and Astronomic Services Administration (PAGASA) has kept the following under typhoon signal no 2: Misamis provinces, Camiguin Island, Bukidnon, Lanao and Zamboanga provinces. The above areas will experience stormy weather today (with winds not exceeding 100 kph). Coastal waters will be rough to very rough and dangerous to all types of seacrafts.

Typhoon signal no. 1 is still in effect in Bohol, Siquijor, Southern Cebu, Negros Oriental, Southern Negros Occidental, Surigao del Norte, Agusan provinces, Davao del Norte, Compostela Valley, North Cotabato and Maguindanao. The above areas will have rains and winds of not more than 60 kph today. Coastal waters will be moderate to rough.