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Karina continues to weaken

August 15, 2014 - 6:36pm

Karina continued to weaken Friday but remained a tropical storm packing maximum sustained winds of 45 mph as it churns in the Eastern Pacific, National Hurricane Center forecasters in Miami said.

At 5 p.m. Friday, Karina was located about 860 miles southwest of the southern tip of the Baja California peninsula and moving toward the west at 10 mph, forecasters said.

Little change in strength is forecast during the next 48 hours, forecasters said. Tropical storm-force winds currently extend outward up to 60 miles.

The center is also keeping tabs on a broad trough of low pressure about 500 miles west-southwest of Manzanillo, Mexico that is producing disorganized showers and thunderstorms. Gradual development of this system is forecast through next week while it moves toward the west at 5 to 10 mph.

Forecasters gave the area a 10 percent chance of forming into a tropical cyclone within the coming 48 hours and a 40 percent chance of forming into a tropical cyclone during the next 5 days.

National Hurricane Center officials in May predicted 14 to 20 named storms and seven to 11 hurricanes — including three to six major hurricanes — to form this year in the Eastern Pacific Basin. Overall, they gave the 2014 season a 50 percent chance of being above normal, 40 percent chance of being near-normal and a 10 percent chance of being below normal.

The Eastern Pacific averages 15 named storms, eight hurricanes and four major hurricanes each year, according to the center.

The Eastern Pacific hurricane season began May 15 and ends Nov. 30.

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