* Fitial asks public to exercise caution along exposed reefs, beaches
* EMO urges boats to avoid inter-island travel
The Joint Typhoon Warning Center has issued a tropical cyclone formation alert as a tropical disturbance was formed yesterday north of the CNMI.
Gov. Benigno R. Fitial advised the public especially beachgoers, fishermen, tourists, swimmers, divers and surfers to exercise caution along exposed reefs and beaches.
The Emergency Management Office in its special weather statement issued at 3:45pm said residents should avoid venturing near the shore as monsoon swell will create hazardous surf along all shores.
EMO asked boats especially smaller ones to avoid inter-island travel.
The tropical disturbance brought persistent rains yesterday in the CNMI.
According to the National Weather Service in Guam, as of 1pm yesterday a low-level circulation was centered 550 miles north of Saipan and 140 miles southeast of Iwo To Island.
NWS said the tropical cyclone formation alert means that the formation of a tropical depression is likely within 12 to 24 hours.
NWS said the disturbance is expected to move west and bring moderate monsoon conditions to islands in the far northern CNMI during the next several days.
NWS said conditions would gradually deteriorate yesterday, Thursday, as numerous heavy showers and scattered thunderstorms move over the northern islands.
“Sustained winds of 20 to 30 miles per hour will persist the next several days with gusts reaching 35 mph in heavier showers,” NWS said.