North Carolina Declares State of Emergency as Tropical Storm Florence Is Set to Become Major Storm

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Officials are saying the storm could become a Category 3 or higher hurricane.

North Carolina’s governor has declared a state of emergency as Tropical Storm Florence approaches the East Coast.

"While it's still too early to know the storm's path, we know we have to be prepared," Gov. Roy Cooper said in a news release Friday.

The storm is set to become a hurricane by Saturday night, the National Hurricane Center announced, and it will continue to gain power for days.

Conditions could cause the storm to become a major hurricane — Category 3 or higher — by Tuesday night.

"On the forecast track, the center of Florence will move over the southwestern Atlantic Ocean between Bermuda and the Bahamas Tuesday and Wednesday, and approach the southeastern U.S. coast on Thursday," the center said Saturday morning.

Meteorologists said those who live across the East Coast should pay attention even if the storm doesn’t directly hit their state, as it is likely to cause heavy rain in several places.