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Tropical Storm Ophelia strengthens in Atlantic

By the CNN Wire Staff
updated 2:37 PM EDT, Thu September 22, 2011
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • NEW: Ophelia is expected to maintain its current strength over the next 48 hours
  • Ophelia is near hurricane strength
  • The storm is not currently threatening land

Miami (CNN) -- Tropical Storm Ophelia changed little as it moved west over the Atlantic Wednesday, but posed no immediate threat to land, forecasters said.

Ophelia's maximum sustained winds were shy of hurricane strength, at 60 mph, as of late afternoon Wednesday. Its strength was not expected to change much over the next 48 hours, said the Miami-based National Hurricane Center.

The storm was about 1,165 miles (1,875 kilometers) east of the Leeward Islands. It was moving west at about 16 mph (26 kph), forecasters said. No coastal watches or warnings were in effect.

Tropical storm-force winds of at least 39 mph extended outward up to about 230 miles (370 kilometers) from Ophelia's center, the Hurricane Center said.

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