Hurricane Larry intensifying, could be major storm tonight

Larry strengthened into a hurricane Thursday morning in the eastern tropical Atlantic and is getting “larger and a bit stronger,” the National Hurricane Center says.

Forecasters say Larry could become a major hurricane Friday night and possibly reach Category 4 status this weekend.

At 5 a.m. Friday, Category 1 Hurricane Larry packed 90 mph maximum sustained winds and was 1,530 miles east of the Leeward Islands. It is heading west-northwest at 20 mph.

As of now, there are no watches, warnings or direct threats to land, though Bermuda could be in for a close call.

Models don’t show Larry affecting Florida as long as the hurricane eventually tracks north as projected. There is growing confidence that will indeed happen.

Experts say the system still bears watching over the coming days.

“Conveniently, a dip in the jet stream will set up over the East Coast early next week that should deflect Hurricane Larry to the north well offshore of the U.S. coastline,” Local 10 Hurricane Specialist Bryan Norcross said. “It might come uncomfortably close to Bermuda and Atlantic Canada, but those appear to be the only land areas threatened. Still, we’ll want to be sure it completes its turn to the north and is heading out to sea about a week from now.”

Larry is the fifth hurricane and 12th named storm of the Atlantic season, which runs through the end of November.

Click here for the latest radar and forecast information.

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