(AP) Residents of Bermuda installed storm
shutters and hauled their yachts onto beaches in preparation for
Tropical Storm Florence, which intensified Saturday and could
become a hurricane as it approaches the North Atlantic island.
Florence, which could become a hurricane as it
moves over the open Atlantic on Sunday, was expected to reach
the tiny British territory Monday, according to the National
Hurricane Center in Miami. But it was too early to tell whether
it will make a direct hit.
"It's probably not going to become a hurricane
tonight, but it could become a hurricane tomorrow," said Stacy
Stewart, a senior hurricane specialist at the center. It could
be a Category 2 hurricane, which has winds of 96 to 110 mph, he
Bermuda issued a hurricane watch and a tropical
storm warning, and the government urged its 65,000 residents to
take precautions. Part of Bermuda's volunteer army has been
"We are asking residents to please stay home. We
are urging the public's cooperation so that emergency vehicles
will have free passage on the roads," Derrick Burgess, minister
of public safety, said at a news conference. "Also, we are
discouraging the public from sightseeing as this puts everyone
He also encouraged the public to stock up on
hurricane supplies and secure their homes, lawn furniture and
any other loose items which could be affected by high winds.
In boatyards and marinas in Bermuda — a wealthy
island chain 640 miles east of the U.S. coast — boat owners
dragged their yachts onto beaches or secured their moorings.