The Latest: Dorian getting stronger as it approaches Florida

The Latest on Hurricane Dorian (all times local):

8 a.m.

Hurricane Dorian has gotten a little stronger as it moves toward Florida’s East Coast.

The U.S. National Hurricane Center says the storm’s maximum sustained winds increased Friday morning to near 110 mph (175 kph). The Hurricane Center says more strengthening is forecast and Dorian is expected to become a major hurricane later in the day.

Dorian is centered about 255 miles (410 kilometers) east-northeast of the southeastern Bahamas and is moving northwest near 12 mph (19 kph).

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7:25 a.m.

With Hurricane Dorian heading toward Florida’s East Coast, Florida Power and Light has activated its emergency response plan.

The company says in a news release that it has secured some 13,000 employees and additional personnel to help restore power after the storm hits. They’re also working with utility companies across the country to pre-position crews and additional equipment in advance of Dorian’s landfall.

FPL President and CEO Eric Silagy said the company operates more than 48,000 miles (77,000 kilometers) of overhead powerlines across the state. The company says to prepare for power outages because of all the trees that surround the power lines.

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1:05 a.m.

Unsure where Hurricane Dorian is going to land over Labor Day weekend, many Florida residents faced a sense of helplessness as the storm approaches.

In a video he tweeted Thursday evening, President Donald Trump said Dorian could be an “absolute monster.”

The National Hurricane Center said the Category 2 storm is expected to strengthen into a potentially catastrophic Category 4 and slam into the U.S. on Monday somewhere between the Florida Keys and southern Georgia.

With the storm’s track still unclear, no immediate mass evacuations have been ordered.

Across much of the state, residents picked the shelves clean of bottled water and lined up at gas stations.

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis has declared a state of emergency, clearing the way to bring in more fuel. Georgia’s governor has followed suit.

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