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Bertha trending to pass east of Bermuda

A tropical storm watch remained in effect for Bermuda on Friday evening as Hurricane Bertha approached, but forecasters said it might miss the island.

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MIAMI — A tropical storm watch remained in effect for Bermuda on Friday evening as Hurricane Bertha approached, but forecasters said it might miss the island.

Forecasters said tropical storm conditions are possible in the area by late Saturday night. Bertha has already been producing large swells and high surf there, and that's expected to continue over the next few days.

At 4 p.m., the storm's large eye was about 270 miles southeast of Bermuda. A gradual turn to the north is expected during the next 12 to 24 hours. On this track, the core of Bertha is expected to pass well east of Bermuda, the National Hurricane Center said,  but any deviation to the left could bring stronger winds to the island and adjacent waters.

The Atlantic season's first hurricane had maximum sustained winds of about 90 mph with some higher gusting. It's traveling north-northwest at about 5 mph.

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