Tropical Storm Kyle heads north

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Tropical Storm Kyle strengthened to nearly a hurricane as it churned in the Atlantic Ocean toward Bermuda late Friday.

A tropical storm warning is in effect for the island even though forecasters do not expect it to take a direct hit.

As of 8 a.m. Saturday, Kyle's center was about 295 miles west-southwest of Bermuda, the National Hurricane Center said in an advisory. The storm's maximum sustained winds were near 70 mph with higher gusts.

Storms become Category 1 hurricanes, according to the Saffir-Simpson scale, when maximum sustained winds reach 74 mph.

Kyle formed Thursday east of the Bahamas. Tracking forecasts show it could make landfall near the Maine-Canada border on Sunday or Monday, possibly as a Category 1 hurricane. But tropical storm movement can be erratic and forecasts often change.

Kyle could become a hurricane on Saturday, the hurricane center said.

Tropical storm-force winds extend outward up to 205 miles from the center, the NHC said.

Rainfall of up to 3 inches is possible on Bermuda through Saturday, while parts of New England and Canada's Maritime Provinces could get as much as 6 inches.

The storm was moving north-northwest near 15 mph.

This general motion with an additional increase in forward speed is expected on Saturday. A turn toward the north-northeast is expected Saturday night or Sunday," forecasters said. "On this track, the center of Kyle and the strongest winds are forecast to remain west of Bermuda."

A tropical storm warning means tropical storm conditions, including sustained winds of 39 mph, can be expected within 24 hours.