Storm 'Karen' grows stronger

Posted at 09/12/2012 12:48 PM | Updated as of 09/12/2012 12:48 PM

MANILA, Philippines – Tropical storm "Karen" has intensified as it remains over the East Philippine Sea, the state weather bureau said before noon Wednesday.

The Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) said Karen was located 620 kilometers east of Borongan, Eastern Samar at 10 a.m.

From a pervious wind strength of 65 kilometers per hour near the center, Karen is now packing maximum sustained winds of 85 kph and gustiness of up to 100 kph.

No storm warning signals have been raised so far. Moving northwest, Karen maintained its speed of 15 kph.

An estimated rainfall of 10 to 20 millimeters per hour is expected within the storm's 550-km diameter.

Fishing boats and other small sea crafts are advised not to venture out into the eastern seaboard of Visayas and Mindanao due to rough sea conditions.

Last spotted 250 kms west of Zambales, the low pressure area (LPA) over the West Philippine Sea slightly moved away from the country.

PAGASA said Karen is expected to be 770 kms east of Infanta, Quezon on Thursday morning; and 620 kms east of Tuguegarao City on Friday morning.