Hurricane Irene Heads for US, North Carolina and New England now on Hurricane Watch

As Hurricane Irene gets upgraded to a category 3 – the same strength Hurricane Katrina was when it hit New Orleans – and possibly a 4 shortly, residents in North Carolina as well as New England and Long Island on the east coast have been told to prepare for storms.

Irene has already washed away homes in the Bahamas (Aug 25) and will hit the US coast on Saturday evening, including North Carolina’s Outer Banks barrier islands which are popular holiday spots during summer.

The hurricane toll so far is three so far – one in Puerto Rico, where President Obama has declared a state of emergency, and two in the Dominican Republic. Nassau in the Bahamas was badly hit with heavy rain and gusting winds and many residents are taking refuge in shelters as roofs were torn off homes.

New England residents will be watching the storm carefully as it’s headed their way and gaining strength, while North Carolina residents are stocking up on supplies after many of the places in Irene’s path so far have been without electricity and water supplies.

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