Sea trips in Central Visayas resume but rough seas continue to pose a threat to smaller vessels
CEBU CITY, Philippines — As of 11 a.m. on Sunday, Feb. 19, several substations of the Philippine Coast Guard in Central Visayas (PCG-7) have allowed ships to resume their voyages after suspending them last Saturday due to the presence of a nearby low-pressure area (LPA).
But smaller sea vessels are discouraged to set sail as inclement weather prevailing in the region may still result in rough seas.
PCG-7 on Sunday confirmed that seven of its substations have lifted their suspension of trips for ships weighing 250 gross tonnage and below.
Last Saturday, the Philippine Coast Guard in Siquijor, Eastern Bohol, Western Bohol, Northern Cebu, Camotes Island, Negros Oriental, and Central Cebu directed marine vessels to suspend or cancel their voyages due to the effects of the LPA’s extensions.
While authorities permitted sea trips to continue, they advised operators and ship officers to be vigilant, and take precautionary measures from bad weather.
As of 10 a.m. on Sunday, the Philippine Atmospheric Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (Pagasa) has lifted the gale warning in most parts of the Visayas except for those in the Eastern Seaboard.
This means that ships and other vessels weighing 250 gross tonnage and below, bound to and from the provinces of Northern Samar, Eastern Samar, and the eastern coast of Southern Leyte, may not set sail as they expect waves in the surrounding seas to reach up to five meters in height.
The state weather bureau also advised bigger ships sailing in these areas to stay alert.
Pagasa in Mactan, on the other hand, said Cebu and the rest of the Visayas would continue to experience damp weather on Sunday.
The troughs or extensions of the LPA, spotted 160 kilometers east of Tacloban City in Leyte as of 8 a.m., would bring cloudy skies with occasional rains and thunderstorms, Pagasa-Mactan said.
Chances remained slim for the LPA to intensify into a tropical depression, they added.
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