Tropical depression moving toward Bermuda

August 14, 2011 - 5:45 AM

MIAMI (AP) — Forecasters say a new tropical depression is moving toward Bermuda but hasn't strengthened yet.

The National Hurricane Center said at 5 a.m. EDT Sunday that the depression was about 300 miles (480 kilometers) south-southeast of Bermuda. It had maximum sustained winds of 35 mph (55 kph), and was moving west-northwest at 10 mph (17 kph).

The depression was expected to turn gradually to the north in a day or two and could become a tropical storm later Sunday, the Miami-based forecast center said. It added that the center of the depression was expected to approach Bermuda on Sunday night or early Monday.

Bermuda's government has issued a tropical storm watch for Bermuda.

Forecasters, meanwhile, said the sixth named storm of the Atlantic season — post-tropical cyclone Franklin — had lost its tropical storm characteristics in recent hours as it raced over the North Atlantic.

The center said Franklin was located at 5 a.m. EDT Sunday about 435 miles (695 kilometers) south of Cape Race, Newfoundland, Canada and moving east-northeast at 26 mph (43 kph).

Forecasters said Franklin had maximum sustained winds near 40 mph (54 kph) with higher gusts. The center said Franklin lost its tropical cyclone characteristics as it merged with a frontal zone. Gradual weakening was expected in coming days.

No coastal watches or warning were in effect for Franklin early Sunday. Forecasters have said it does not pose any threat to land and is expected to keep moving over open waters.