Hurricane Nate Strengths As It Nears US Coast

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Georgia's risk, though minimal early on, begins Saturday.

The storm doused Central America with heavy rains on Thursday, killing at least 12 people in Nicaragua, nine in Costa Rica, two in Honduras and two in El Salvador, local authorities said. The storm was expected to quickly weaken as it cuts a path through the Southeast on its way to the Mid-Atlantic and Northeast regions, which could see impacts from Nate early next week. It had maximum sustained winds of 90 miles per hour.

Jackson County in coastal MS enacted a curfew that began at 7 p.m. CT (8 p.m. ET), several hours before the powerful northeastern side of the core is expected to arrive.

The Miami-based center says the storm had maximum sustained winds of 80 miles per hour (128.74 kph) and was likely to strengthen over the Gulf of Mexico, reaching the U.S. Gulf coast near New Orleans late Saturday.

Monahan said this should be enough to cause isolated to scattered power outages though, again, nothing like Irma.

In addition to the heavy rain the remnants of Hurricane Nate will bring gusty winds to the area starting on Sunday. Expect rainfall totals to exceed 10 inches in places.

Storm surges of up to 11 feet are expected near the Mississippi River to the state's border with Alabama.

Where is Hurricane Nate now?

Tropical storm warnings extended west of Grand Isle to Morgan City, Louisiana, and around Lake Maurepas and east of the Alabama-Florida border to the Okaloosa-Walton County line in the Florida Panhandle.

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Now a Category 1 hurricane, Nate was 105 miles (170 km) south of the mouth of the Mississippi River on Saturday afternoon and moving at a rapid 25 miles per hour (40 km per hour), the NHC said.

Tornadoes also are apotential issue, the Weather Service stated.

Severe Weather Team 2 is tracking the storm throughout the day on Channel 2 Action News.

Tropical Storm Nate gained force as it sped toward Mexico's Yucatan Peninsula Friday after drenching Central America in rain that was blamed for at least 21 deaths. "We do want people to be very, very cautious and to not take this storm for granted".

The National Weather Service said: "Wind and rain impacts will be confined to southeast MS with the greatest impacts along the Interstate 59 corridor and coastal areas".

The Bankhead Tunnel, a major downtown thoroughfare that passes under the Mobile River, was closed because of the hurricane, emergency officials and a reporter with CNN affiliate WPMI tweeted.

New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu said 109 of its 120 pumps are functioning, which is 92 percent capacity.

Landrieu told a press conference on Friday he had ordered the Sewerage and Water Board (SWB) to boost staffing at pump stations during the storm.

MS has opened 11 evacuation centres in preparation.