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Hurricanes rarely get close to Bermuda, but Category 3 Humberto may swipe the island Wednesday night

HAMILTON, Bermuda — The year’s second major Atlantic hurricane is expected to deliver strong winds and large swells to Bermuda as it makes a rare pass Wednesday night just north of the Atlantic island territory.

Humberto, a sprawling Category 3 storm, is packing sustained winds of 115 mph as it pushes east-northeast about 285 miles west of Bermuda, the National Hurricane Center said Wednesday at 5 a.m. ET.

“It is large enough in nature here to where we will have some of those outer bands impact the island (of Bermuda) and also see some hurricane-force gusts associated with this,” CNN meteorologist Pedram Javaheri said early Wednesday.

Hurricane-force winds of at least 74 mph extend 60 miles from Humberto’s core, with tropical storm force winds of 39 mph or stronger reaching 175 miles from the storm’s center, CNN meteorologist Judson Jones said.

“They’ll get tropical-storm-force winds, for sure,” Jones said of Bermuda. Two to 4 inches of rain, dangerous waves along south-facing beaches and a storm surge of 1 to 3 feet also are expected, the hurricane center said.

Humberto is one of three storms drawing attention in the Atlantic basin. Imelda, a tropical depression, has rescue teams on alert as it threatens to dump the most rain since Hurricane Harvey on eastern Texas. And Tropical Storm Jerry, still far east of the Leeward Islands, could strengthen into a hurricane by week’s end.

The rush of activity comes as the Atlantic hurricane season reaches it statistical peak in the weeks surrounding September 10, a period when weather conditions favor storms forming quickly.

Hurricanes don’t often approach Bermuda

Only 21 hurricanes have passed within 100 miles of Bermuda over the past century, with Hurricane Gonzalo in 2014 the last to make landfall there.

“They go by, but it’s such a small target,” CNN meteorologist Monica Garrett said. “So, they don’t usually make landfall.”

Humberto could strengthen as it passes Wednesday into Thursday morning less than 100 miles to the island’s north, Jones and Garrett said.

“Weather should begin to deteriorate in Bermuda later today,” the hurricane center .

A hurricane warning is in effect for the island, meaning hurricane conditions are expected within 36 hours.

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