Philippines on High Alert as Mawar Intensifies Towards Super Typhoon Strength

The Philippines is preparing for the potential arrival of a super typhoon, which may not make landfall but is expected to cause heavy rainfall and enhance the upcoming southwest monsoon or habagat. The tropical cyclone, named Mawar, was recently downgraded from a super typhoon to a typhoon due to an eyewall replacement cycle. As of Wednesday, May 24, it remains outside the Philippine Area of Responsibility (PAR) but is projected to intensify back into a super typhoon by Thursday, May 25. Mawar currently has maximum sustained winds of 175 km/h and gustiness of up to 215 km/h, and its radius was over 300 kilometers as of Wednesday.

Although there are slim chances of landfall, PAGASA forecasts that Mawar's rainbands could still affect Cagayan Valley between Sunday and Tuesday, May 30, depending on its proximity to Northern Luzon during the recurvature period. Furthermore, the weather bureau cautioned that the tropical cyclone's size could result in raised tropical cyclone wind signals. Mawar may also potentially enhance the southwest monsoon, causing rain in the western regions of Mimaropa, Visayas, and Mindanao from Friday to Saturday, and in the western parts of Southern Luzon and the Visayas starting Sunday.

Mawar is predicted to enter PAR on Friday evening, May 26, or Saturday morning, May 27, and would be given the local name Betty once inside. By Sunday, May 28, it is anticipated to be east of Northern Luzon, over the Philippine Sea. However, PAGASA advises the public to continue monitoring updates on Mawar since the situation may still change. Additionally, the weather bureau might announce the start of the rainy season in the coming days, pending sufficient rainfall volume recorded, and the criteria for the onset of the rainy season may be fulfilled during or after Mawar's passage.

  1. "Philippines braces for potential arrival of super typhoon Mawar," ABS-CBN News, May 24, 2023,
  2. "Mawar: Typhoon could enhance southwest monsoon, says PAGASA," Rappler, May 24, 2023,
  3. "Super typhoon Mawar threatens Philippines with heavy rainfall, winds," CNN Philippines, May 25, 2023,