Hurricane Katia not expected to make US landfall

Hurricane Katia satellite view Hurricane Katia is the 13th named storm of the Atlantic hurricane season, which is only at its halfway point

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Hurricane Katia, the category two Atlantic storm, is not expected to make landfall in the US, forecasters say.

The forecast offers some relief to the US after a host of states were battered by storms Irene and Lee.

However, gusty winds and large waves may affect Bermuda, the US National Hurricane Center said. The island is on tropical storm watch.

Katia is more 335 miles (540km) offshore, but swells and rip currents could reach the east coast of the US.

The storm is expected to remain off the eastern coast of the US, turning north-north-east towards the cooler waters of the north Atlantic towards the end of the week.

Hurricane Katia is not expected to strengthen on Wednesday and may begin weakening by Thursday, the National Hurricane Center said.

Massive rain and flooding followed both Irene - which hit North Carolina as a hurricane before weakening to a tropical storm as it headed north - and Lee, which has soaked southern states in recent days.

US President Barack Obama declared "major disasters" in the states of North Carolina and New York.

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