'Odette' maintains strength while moving west

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, December 17) — Typhoon Odette maintained its strength as it heads towards Kalayaan Islands.

In its 11 p.m. bulletin, the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) said Odette was last spotted 105 kilometers northwest of Puerto Princesa City, Palawan - with 150 kilometers per hour winds near the center and gustiness of up to 185 kph.

Signal No. 3 is still up over the northern portion of Palawan including the Kalayaan Islands, which indicates destructive typhoon-force winds within 18 hours.

Signal No. 2 is in effect in the central portion of Palawan (Aborlan, Narra, Quezon, Sofronio Española, Brooke's Point, Rizal, Dumaran, Araceli, Roxas), including Calamian Islands

These areas may have damaging gale to storm-force winds within 24 hours.

PAGASA said the rest of Palawan - including Cuyo and Cagayancillo Islands - is under Signal No. 1, indicating strong winds are expected within 36 hours.

Until Saturday, the state weather bureau forecasts heavy to torrential rain over Kalayaan Islands and moderate to heavy rains over mainland Palawan, Calamian Islands, Quezon, Camarines Provinces, Catanduanes, and Aurora

Over 338,000 residents have been evacuated as the typhoon battered parts of the Visayas and Mindanao.

PAGASA expects Odette to leave the Philippine Area of Responsibility by Saturday morning or early afternoon.