PAGASA satellite photo as of 6:00 pm of December 20, 2017.

DAVAO CITY, Philippines – State weather bureau Philippine Philippine Atmospheric Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) said the low pressure area found east of Hinatuan, Surigao del Sur has developed into a tropical depression.

In its weather bulletin posted 5 pm of December 20, PAGASA said scattered to widespread rains is expected over eastern Visayas and eastern Mindanao within the next 24 hours.

Tropical depression Vinta is expected to land between Caraga and Davao Region on Thursday evening (December 21) to Friday morning (December 22).

PAGASA said a tropical cyclone warning signal number 1 in the provinces of Agusan del Norte, Agusan del Sur, Surigao del Norte, Compostela Valley, and Davao del Norte is possible.

“Residents of these areas must undertake appropriate measures against flooding and landslides and coordinate with their respective local government and disaster risk reduction and management offices,” Pagasa said.

Meanwhile, fisherfolks and those with small boats are advised not to travel out to sea “due to the moderate to rough seas associated with the approaching Tropical Depression.”

Pagasa said at 4pm of Wednesday, December 20, the center of Vinta was found at 735 kilometers east of Hinatuan in Surigao del Sur with a maximum sustained winds of 45 km/h near the center and gustiness of up to 60 km/h.

The Office of Civil Defense 11 said all local disaster risk reduction and management councils (LDRRMC) in the region have conducted pre-disaster risk assessments.

Franz Irag, OCD 11 officer, said the disaster agencies in Davao Occidental and Compostela Valley have conducted their early assessments since Tuesday, December 19.

“Davao City is conducting a pre-disaster assessment this afternoon,” he said in a television interview.

In pre-disaster assessment, government officials are identifying areas which would be mostly affected by flooding, landslides or storm surges.

Irag said the evacuation centers such as schools, churches and barangay gymnasiums have been identified. (

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