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Igor strengthens to category four hurricane

by Staff Writers
Miami (AFP) Sept 12, 2010
Igor, swirling in the central Atlantic and not a threat to land, strengthened to a powerful category four hurricane Sunday, the Miami-based National Hurricane Center said.

Hurricane Igor "rapidly intensifies into a category four hurricane," on the five-level Saffir-Simpson scale, the NHC said in a special advisory.

The storm had maximum sustained winds near 135 miles (215 kilometers) per hour, with higher gusts at 1830 GMT. "Some additional strengthening is forecast during the next 48 hours," the NHC said.

The center of Igor was 1,565 miles (2,520 kilometers) east of Santo Domingo, in the Dominican Republic, traveling towards the west at nearly 14 miles (22 kilometers) an hour at 1830 GMT.

Forecasters said the storm could turn west-northwest on Tuesday and track the northern Caribbean, possibly heading toward Bermuda.

Meanwhile, a tropical depression formed off the coast of Africa, and a tropical storm warning was issued for the southern Cape Verde Islands.

Tropical Depression Twelve was expected to become a tropical storm later Sunday or Monday, according to the Miami-based NHC.

At 1800 GMT the storm was dumping rain on the islands, located off western tip of the African continent.

Early this week, powerful Tropical Storm Hermine slammed into far northeastern Mexico and then barreled into US territory, sparking flash floods on both sides of the border.

Hermine came on the heels of Hurricane Earl, which gained category four status at its height in the Atlantic Ocean, whipping up heavy winds along the east coast of the United States and Canada.

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Cape Verde on alert as Tropical Storm Igor forms
Miami, Florida (AFP) Sept 8, 2010
Tropical Storm Igor formed Wednesday in the eastern Atlantic and took aim for the Caribbean, prompting the government of Cape Verde to place its citizens on alert. A bulletin from the Miami-based National Hurricane Center said the government of Cape Verde had issued a tropical storm watch for southern islands in the group, including Maio, Sao Tiago, Fogo and Brava. As of 1500 GMT, Igor w ... read more

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