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UPDATE: JOAQUIN INTENSIFIES TO CAT 4 HURRICANE

(REUTERS/NASA/Handout via Reuters)

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Steve Birr Vice Reporter
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Hurricane Joaquin, updated Thursday afternoon to a category 4, is nearing the central Bahamas and is expected to bring intense wind, rain and storm surges to the area Thursday night.

According to the National Hurricane Center, Joaquin has sustained wind speeds of 130 mph, and is currently moving west-southwest at 5 mph.

Models have hurricane Joaquin slowly moving up the eastern seaboard and it’s expected to hit the coasts of North Carolina, Virginia and Maryland as a Category 1 late Sunday night into early Monday with wind speeds of around 90 mph and heavy rain. New Jersey and New York will be preparing for impact Tuesday morning, though Joaquin is expected to be downgraded to a tropical storm by that time.

Check back for updates.

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Content created by The Daily Caller News Foundation is available without charge to any eligible news publisher that can provide a large audience. For licensing opportunities of our original content, please contact licensing@dailycallernewsfoundation.org.