UPDATED: It’s almost a month to the day after Super Typhoon Nina (internationally called Nock-Ten) directly struck Catanduanes, right at the town of Bato where the Virac Radar is located. Still, social media and general internet searches yield no result on the fate of our beloved weather radar.
But we tried a search one more time, and we found this post:
A facebook user named Carla Ate Kayla Arcilla somehow made a trip to the vicinity of the Weather Radar station of the Philippine Atmospheric Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) last Wednesday. One of her photos include the weather station building, with the radome seemingly intact.
It is very unlike the fate of the radar stations in Guiuan (Eastern Samar), Basco (Batanes) and also in Baler (Aurora) where the radomes were blown off by the strong typhoons which passed very close to their vicinity.
It is despite that Catanduanes and other affected areas in Bicol Region experienced Typhoon Nina to what they said was the strongest typhoon to hit them in years. The damage in civilian infrastructure in Catanduanes was so severe that the local government even said that it may take months before electrical power is completely restored in the whole island province.
Until now no data from Virac radar is being reflected on climatex.ph and meteopilipinas.gov.ph. The last transmission from this station was sent at 6:15 pm last Christmas Day as Typhoon Nina nears in.
If the doppler radar and its related facilities did indeed survived, then it could mean that only the communications facilities were blown off, or just there is still no mains power yet to supply the radar station.
We’re still yet to verify on this latest development, including our short correspondence to Ms Arcilla and to the PAGASA staffs. Please stay tune for latest updates.
Update: Last week we made contact with the owner of the Facebook photo. She said that it was indeed been taken after Typhoon Nina, with the radome still relatively intact. However, we are still yet to receive a reply from PAGASA.