Tropical Storm Maria Strengthens
Tropical Storm Maria strengthened today on a course that’s forecast to take it west of Bermuda early tomorrow, the National Hurricane Center said.
Maria’s top winds early today strengthened to 60 miles (95 kilometers) per hour from 50 mph yesterday, the center said on its website. The system, traveling north-northwest at 10 mph, was 615 miles south-southwest of Bermuda before 8 a.m. Miami time and is forecast to strengthen further the next two days.
The Bermuda Weather Service issued a tropical storm warning and said winds of at least 39 mph may lash the island group late today. At its closest, the storm is expected to pass about 160 miles west of Bermuda tomorrow, the agency said on its website. Tropical storm-force winds extend up to 175 miles from Maria’s eye, mainly to the east, the U.S. center said.
Forecasters in Canada are also monitoring Maria, which the Canadian Hurricane Center said may pack 68 mph winds -- below the 74 mph threshold for a hurricane -- tomorrow and strike Newfoundland on Sept. 16. Canadian offshore energy facilities operated by Exxon Mobil Corp. (XOM), Royal Dutch Shell Plc (RDSA) and Hibernia Management & Development Co. are close to the storm’s projected path.
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