CNN Philippines – The death count in the aftermath of tropical cyclone Dante (international name: Choi-wan) climbed to nine on Saturday after three more fatalities from Leyte province were reported to the disaster management agency.
The additional casualties were from Calubian town, according to the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC).
The victims were two boys aged two and seven previously tagged as missing persons and a 51-year-old woman who was “caught in a flash flood while trying to cross [a] river,” the NDRRMC said.
Six other deaths were earlier recorded in Negros Occidental, Cebu province, South Cotabato, Davao de Oro, and Davao del Sur.
Rescuers are still searching for a missing man – around 40 to 45 years old – from Maco, Davao de Oro.
Dante now outside PAR
Tropical Depression Dante exited the country’s storm monitoring area on Saturday, a day after reentering it, the weather bureau said.
It exited at 9:30 a.m., the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) said in its 11 a.m. bulletin.
The weather bureau said the northern coast of northern Luzon will still have moderate to rough seas.
Dante, last seen 600 kilometers north of Itbayat, Batanes, is heading to the Ryukyu Islands, it said.
Meanwhile, PAGASA announced that the rainy season has officially started in the country on Friday.
“The passage of Tropical Storm Dante and the occurrence of widespread rainfall monitored by PAGASA in the last five days for areas under Type I climate confirm the onset of the rainy season,” PAGASA Administrator Vicente Malano said.
Climate Type I areas are mostly found in the western section of the country. They have two seasons: dry from November to April, and wet during the rest of the year, according to PAGASA.
The period of maximum rain in these areas is from June to September.
As the rainy season starts, PAGASA said intermittent rains associated with the southwest monsoon will affect Metro Manila and the western section of the country.
PAGASA added rainfall conditions will be high until July, but monsoon breaks may still occur for several days or weeks.
The declaration of the rainy season comes after ‘Dante’ re-entered the Philippine Area of Responsibility Friday afternoon as a tropical depression.