MANILA - The state weather bureau said Saturday tropical depression Igme intensified into a severe tropical storm.
The weather disturbance is far from Philippine landmass, PAGASA added, meaning no tropical cyclone wind signal is in effect anywhere in the country.
Igme was last spotted 500 kilometers north-northeast of Basco, Batanes, packing 95 kilometers per hour (kph) near the center and gusts of up to 115 kph.
The storm likely to leave the Philippine area of responsibility between 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. Saturday.
"This tropical cyclone is likely to steadily intensify in the next couple of days. It is forecast to reach typhoon category within 48 hours," PAGASA added.
However, Igme will enhance the southwest monsoon, bringing intermittent gusts over Batanes and Babuyan Islands.
The southwest monsoon will also bring light to moderate with at times heavy rains over Batanes, Babuyan Islands, Ilocos Region, Cordillera Administrative Region, Zambales and Bataan.
Flooding and rain-induced landslide may occur during heavy or prolonged rainfall especially in areas that are highly or very highly susceptible to these hazards, PAGASA warned.