MANILA (UPDATE) – Typhoon “Karen” has maintained its strength as it continued to move farther from the country.
According to weather bureau PAGASA, the typhoon was last spotted 720 kilometers east of Basco, Batanes.
Karen was packing winds of up to 185 kilometers per hour (kph) and gustiness of up to 220 kph.
It was moving north at 15 kph in the direction of southern Japan.
The typhoon, the 11th tropical cyclone to enter the Philippine Area of Responsibility (PAR) in 2012, is expected to exit by Sunday.
It is the strongest tropical cyclone, based on its maximum sustained winds, to enter PAR this year.
As Karen moves away, rains are expected as the typhoon continues to enhance the southwest monsoon.
Over the weekend, provinces in central Luzon will be looking at fair weather with 10% to 20% chance of rains in the morning, going up to 40% to 60% by afternoon.
Calabarzon is also looking at rains Friday night, with most places having 90 to 99% chance of showers.
The area will still be under cloud cover and rains for most of the day tomorrow.
The same kind of weather is expected over the Bicol region and Mindoro.
The western potion of Visayas should also expect showers over the weekend with less rains expected over the eastern side, which means fair weather over Samar, Leyte, Bohol and Cebu.
In Mindanao, good weather is expected with partly cloudy skies and isolated showers.
Metro Manila, meanwhile, has 30% chance of rains over the weekend. -- With a report from ANC