Tropical Storm Kate was accelerating away from the Bahamas today with maximum sustained winds of 60 miles per hour and could become a hurricane by Wednesday, the Miami-based National Hurricane Centre (NHC) has said.

It said that the 12th named storm for the 2015 Atlantic Hurricane season was located at 695 miles west south west of Bermuda and is moving towards the north near 17 miles per hour.

The storm caused a number of schools and business in the Bahamas to close early and the state-owned airline, Bahamasair, said it had cancelled some of its flights including one to San Salvador with passengers being told they would be accommodated on Wednesday.

The NHC said the swells generated by Kate are affecting the eastward-facing beaches in the northwestern Bahamas but should gradually subside by tomorrow.

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