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Weakening Hurricane Erin spawns strong waves along East Coast

MIAMI (AP) -- A weakening Hurricane Erin with top winds of 90 mph headed north Tuesday, away from the United States on an arching route also expected to spare Canada.

However, Erin was still generating strong waves along the upper East Coast and forecasters said it could touch southern coastal areas of Newfoundland later in the week -- but only as a further weakened extra-tropical storm.

Erin was downgraded overnight from a Category 2 to a Category 1 storm, on a scale of one to five.

At 5 a.m. EDT Tuesday


37.2 degrees north latitude, 65.9 degrees west longitude, about 460 miles south of Yarmouth, Nova Scotia

North at 7 mph

Sustained winds at 90 mph

Little change

By 5 a.m. EDT, Erin was about 460 miles south of Yarmouth, Nova Scotia, and moving north at 7 mph. A gradual turn toward the northeast and a boost in forward speed was expected later, according to Stacy Stewart, hurricane specialist at the National Hurricane Center in Miami.

"It'll move up into the north Atlantic, then probably end up in Greenland or Iceland, the graveyard of most Atlantic hurricanes if they don't move inland," Stewart said. "It's just a threat to shipping."

Over the weekend, Erin skirted Bermuda, which sits about 560 miles off the North Carolina coast. No major damage or injuries were reported, though wind knocked trees onto power lines, and airlines canceled flights in and out of the island.

Despite losing power, Erin still was capable of generating large swells along portions of the U.S. East Coast during the next several days, according to Stewart. He said no hurricane or tropical storm watches or warnings were posted, but cautioned authorities and residents of northern coastal areas to keep watching for rough seas.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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