Gordon dumps heavy rains, Hurricane Florence barrels toward Bermuda

Rain and wind are whipped up by Tropical Storm Gordon

The National Hurricane Centre said Tropical Storm Gordon was weakening on a path into Arkansas after striking the coast at 70mph, just shy of hurricane strength, near Pascagoula, Mississippi.

Gordon's maximum sustained winds were 70 miles per hour (110 kilometers). Flash flood watches stretched from the Florida panhandle, through parts of southwest Alabama, Mississippi, Arkansas, Oklahoma, Kansas, Iowa and IL.

In its 11 a.m. advisory, the hurricane center said Florence had increased its maximum sustained winds to near 125 miles per hour with higher gusts.

The storm knocked out power to at least 27,000 customers Tuesday night in Florida, Alabama and Mississippi.

"Some places in MS have gotten up to 3 inches of rainfall and some areas can receive up to 5 inches of rainfall", Moore said Wednesday afternoon.

"I'm asking all residents to do their part in getting ready for this storm", New Orleans Mayor LaToya Cantrell said in a statement.

The Escambia County Sheriff's office posted on its Facebook page that responding deputies discovered that a child had been killed.

Gordon was expected to flood coastal areas and dump heavy rains in Florida, Alabama and Mississippi. Crews were already restoring electricity early Wednesday.

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Earlier, families filled sandbags, took patio furniture inside and stocked up on batteries and bottled water as the Gulf Coast in the southern United States prepared for Tropical Storm Gordon, which could strengthen and become the second hurricane to hit the region in less than a year.

Boaters are evacuating to safe harbors, and motorists are fleeing barrier islands as the Gulf Coast hustles to get ready for the storm.

As for the possibility of tornadoes, Werner said there is a very low risk.

Tropical-storm-force winds (39-plus mph) from #Gordon are expected to reach the northern Gulf Coast by Tuesday afternoon, with hurricane-force winds (74-plus mph) expected by Tuesday evening.

Gov. John Bel Edwards declared a state of emergency Monday and says 200 National Guard troops will be deployed to southeastern Louisiana. "It's part of life on the Gulf Coast, just something we have to deal with".

MS shut down a dozen Gulf Coast casinos, while workers on at least 54 oil and gas production platforms were evacuated. She said numerous locals, herself included, were planning to stay through the storm but many visitors who'd come in for the Labor Day weekend were heading out of town. The beaches in Destin were crowded with people who were there to watch the storm roll in offshore.

Meanwhile, Hurricane Florence has flourished in the face of southwesterly wind shear and has become the first major hurricane of this year's season.

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