1. Storm Watch

    Irene Nears Landfall in NC

    NAGS HEAD, NC - AUGUST 26:  Wind and rain from Hurricane Irene chase visitors off the beach August 26, 2011 in Nags Head, North Carolina. Dare County, which includes the vacation towns of Nags Head, Kitty Hawk and Kill Devil Hills, has ordered a mandatory evacuation of tourists and residents as Hurricane Irene strengthens and moves closer to the area. The eye of the hurricane is expected to pass over Dare County tomorrow afternoon.  (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)

    Scott Olson / Getty Images

    Hurricane Irene roared closer to landfall Friday evening near the North Carolina coast, bringing 100-mile-per-hour winds and a storm surge. Irene is expected to make landfall near Beaufort, N.C., between 7 and 8 a.m. Saturday. An ocean surge of up to 11 feet is possible in North Carolina, as forecasters say the water and possible flooding could be more damaging than the wind. The Category 2 storm is expected to weaken as it moves up the Eastern Seaboard, but will still cause massive damage in the Northeast. New York and New Jersey issued evacuation orders for coastal areas, New York City closed the local airports, and mass transportation will close Saturday at noon. The storm has already cost an estimated $1.1 billion in insured losses in the Caribbean, and is expected to rack up more costs as it moves through the Northeast.

    Read it at CNN