Igor Brushes Bermuda as a Cat. 1 Hurricane

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Hurricane Igor swept past the island of Bermuda's west coast Sunday night and left thousands without power.

The storm closed the island's schools at least until Tuesday.

Flag poles and palm trees buckled as winds gusts - some up to 90-miles-an-hour - sent steady streams of rain hurling sideways.

Igor weakened to a category one hurricane just before it hit Bermuda, but it was producing hurricane force winds extending 90 miles out from its center. It was strong enough to knock out power to two-thirds of the island.

Ahead of the storm, officials feared Igor could be the worst hurricane to hit its shores.

"Our country and our people have throughout our history rarely faced the full fury of a strom of this magnitude," said Ewart Brown, Bermuda's Premier. "As a people, we will pray once again that we will be spared."

Tourists were urged to pack up and leave their vacations early.

"We really wanted to stay, to be quite honest," one tourist said. "It was going to be an experience, really, to see a hurricane."

For residents, warnings of igor's possible direct hit recalled memories of Hurricane Fabian, which caused hundreds of millions of dollars worth of damage in September of 2003.

"This whole section was taken out by Fabian," said Lisa Rollins as she showed a television crew areas of the local airport. "We had palm trees coming through the doors, through the windows, everything."

The storm is expected to veer away from the U.S. East Coast. Meteorologists say that is due to a cold front along the eastern seaboard. It's still expected to cause high surf and strong rip currents.

Meanwhile, Tropical Storm Julia is the next storm brewing in the Atlantic. Julia currently has tropical force winds extending up to 200 miles. Forecasters however, believe the storm will weaken in the next day or two.

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