Hurricane Dorian has been downgraded to a Category 4 storm. The National Hurricane Center says Dorian's maximum sustained winds are near 155 miles an hour with higher gusts. Forecasters say it remains an extremely dangerous hurricane as it moves slowly to the west at about one mile per hour after battering the Bahamas. The Hurricane Warning and Storm Surge Watch along the east coast of Florida have been extended northward to the Flagler/Volusia County Line. The Hurricane Watch is extended northward into Georgia. Forecasters expect Dorian to move dangerously close to Florida's east coast late tonight through Wednesday.
President Trump is declaring a state of emergency in Georgia ahead of Hurricane Dorian. The White House approved Georgia's emergency declaration as the Category 4 storm heads toward the U.S. Florida, North Carolina and South Carolina are also in a state of emergency. Georgia Governor Brian Kemp said residents have been ordered to evacuate several counties. The National Hurricane Center says strong winds and life-threatening storm surge are expected to affect the Carolinas and Georgia through mid-week this week.
Governor Roy Cooper says North Carolina is facing the likelihood of severe storm damage from Hurricane Dorian on Thursday and Friday with effects being felt as early as Wednesday morning. The storm is expected to turn north in the next 24 hours and begin picking up speed. Swift water and search and rescue teams are ready to respond if needed, and 300 members of the National Guard are being activated today. Anyone living in an area where local officials are urging residents to evacuate should heed the warnings, and officials are reminding people to bring their pets.
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