Hurricane Earl eyes the East Coast

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As Tropical Storm Danielle dissipates in the North Atlantic, the East Coast of the U.S. is bracing for a brush with Hurricane Earl.

Earl is now a powerful Category 4 hurricane, with maximum sustained winds of 135 mph, according to the National Hurricane Center. A tropical storm warning is in effect for the Turks and Caicos Islands and a watch is in effect for the southeastern Bahamas.

The center of Earl will continue to move away from Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands this morning and move over the open Atlantic east of the Turks and Caicos later today and tonight. Tropical storm force winds extend as far as 200 miles.

The hurricane center warns that interests from the Carolinas northward to New England should monitor the progress of Earl.

Current projections from the hurricane center show Earl skirting the North Carolina coast early Friday morning and heading up the Eastern seaboard.

"Any small shift in the track could dramatically alter whether it makes landfall or whether it remains over the open ocean," Wallace Hogsett, a meteorologist at the center, told the Associated Press. "I can't urge enough to just stay tuned."

Meanwhile, Tropical Storm Fiona, with maximum sustained winds of 40 mph, has formed in the Atlantic and is quickly moving westward, the hurricane center reports.

The center of Fiona is expected to pass near or northeast of the Northern Leeward islands early Wednesday. Early five-day projections show Fiona staying out in the Atlantic.

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