HAMILTON, Bermuda (AP):Tropical Storm Leslie moved slowly northward yesterday after pausing to spin in place over the Atlantic, and forecasters expected it would regain strength and become a hurricane before passing to the east of Bermuda.
The latest forecasts pointed to the storm going by about 200 miles (320 kilometres) east-southeast of the British territory this afternoon or evening as a Category 1 hurricane.
"It appears that Bermuda will be spared a direct impact," Wayne Perinchief, the national security minister, said last Friday.
"However, I urge the public to remain cautious as there is the potential for the storm to reintensify and change track, and we could experience heavy rain and winds in shower bands."
Some businesses closed early last Friday and shops were crowded for a second day with people buying emergency supplies. At least one cruise ship cancelled a stop in Bermuda and the airport was expected to close.
Bermuda, a wealthy offshore financial haven and tourist destination, has strong building codes and is accustomed to storms.
The US National Hurricane Centre in Miami said Leslie had resumed forward movement after staying stationary last Thursday night and into Friday.
Yesterday morning, the storm had top sustained winds of 65mph (100kph), below the hurricane threshold of 74mph (120kph).
'It appears that Bermuda will be spared a direct impact.'