Fred was easternmost hurricane to form in tropics of Atlantic, weakens to a tropical storm

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MIAMI — Weather forecasters say Fred was the easternmost hurricane known to have formed in the Atlantic tropics, and the first to actually pass over the Cape Verde Islands as a hurricane.

The U.S. National Hurricane Center in Miami says Fred was downgraded to a tropical storm late Monday with maximum sustained winds of 70 mph (113 kph).

Heavy rain and strong winds were spreading over the northwestern islands. Gradual weakening is forecast over the next couple of days.

Meanwhile in the Pacific, Hurricane Jimena is centered about 1,230 miles (1979 kilometers) east of Hilo, Hawaii. The Category 4 storm has maximum sustained winds near 145 mph (233 kph). The hurricane doesn't currently pose a threat to land.

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