Karen speeds up; more areas under signal no. 3

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Satellite image as of October 15, 2 pm. Image courtesy of PAGASA

Satellite image as of October 15, 2 pm.

Image courtesy of PAGASA

MANILA, Philippines – Typhoon Karen (Sarika) accelerated early Saturday afternoon, October 15, as it threatened the northern Quezon-Aurora area.

In its bulletin issued 2 pm on Saturday, state weather bureau PAGASA said Karen is 120 kilometers north northwest of Virac, Catanduanes, moving west northwest at 20 kilometers per hour (km/h) from the previous 17 km/h.

It maintained its strength, with maximum winds of up to 130 km/h and gustiness of up to 180 km/h.

Signal number 3 is raised in the following areas:

Signal number 2 is up in these areas:

PAGASA warned that storm surges up to 2.5 meters high are possible in coastal areas of provinces under signal numbers 2 and 3.

The following areas, meanwhile, are under signal number 1:

Moderate to heavy rain is expected within the 500-km diameter of the typhoon. Residents of areas under warning signals should watch out for possible floods and landslides.

Metro Manila, in particular, will experience "rains with some gusty winds" starting Saturday night.

PAGASA also warned that sea travel in the seaboards of Northern Samar and Eastern Samar is risky.

Karen is expected to be over Polillo Island between 2 am and 5 am on Sunday, October 16, before making landfall in the Quezon-Aurora area between 5 am and 7 am.

After hitting land, it will cross Central Luzon the rest of Sunday morning and then exit landmass via Pangasinan by afternoon.

The typhoon is expected to leave the Philippine Area of Responsibility (PAR) on Monday, October 17, between 5 am and 7 am.

After Karen leaves, however, Tropical Storm Haima – located east of Mindanao – will enter PAR on Monday. It will be given the local name Lawin. – Rappler.com