WATCH: NOAA Hurricane Hunters - storm chasers fly into Hurricane Matthew. Very turbulent flight into the eye of powerful Category 4 Hurricane Matthew on a WP-3D Orion aircraft NOAA43.Hurricane Matthew is heading for the US, threatening Florida. Here's our live coverage on Matthew's path, evacuations and its devastation. Hurricane Matthew now nearing Florida Space Coast; Gusts Over 80 MPH Measured; Potentially Catastrophic Strike For Parts of Florida, Georgia, South Carolina.Hurricane Matthew, a Category 3 hurricane, is already blasting parts of eastern Florida with high winds, as its center tracks ever so close to the coast, bringing dangerous storm surge, destructive winds and flooding rainfall stretching into Georgia and South Carolina by the weekend.Wind gusts as high as 88 mph have been clocked at Satellite Beach, Florida, just south of Patrick Air Force Base, as the hurricane's outer eyewall flirts with the coast. Bands of heavy rain are lashing the coast as far north as Jacksonville Beach.Matthew's precarious track in which the eyewall may scrape the coast with destructive hurricane-force winds will continue through Saturday, potentially delivering the strongest, most destructive winds anyone in parts of the northeast Florida coast and Georgia coast has seen in their lifetime. Of more concern is the storm surge. According to the National Weather Service in Jacksonville, Florida, Thursday afternoon, "Some of the lowest barrier islands will be completely overtopped with large battering waves and life-threatening flooding. Barrier islands are likely to be breached and it is extremely possible that new inlets will be cut off in the worst affected areas."This could be a higher storm surge, in spots, than the New Jersey shore saw during Superstorm Sandy in Oct. 2012, the National Weather Service in Jacksonville, Florida, says.Hurricane warnings extend from Jupiter Inlet, Florida to South Santee River, South Carolina. This includes locations such as Orlando, Jacksonville, Florida, Savannah, Georgia, and Charleston, South Carolina. Jacksonville had not been under a hurricane warning in 17 years, until now.A hurricane warning remains in effect, as well, in the northwest Bahamas, but will be likely dropped soon.A tropical storm warning remains in effect from north of the South Santee River, South Carolina, to Surf City, North Carolina. Tropical storm warnings are also in effect from south of Jupiter Inlet to Boca Raton, Florida. On the West Coast of Florida, a tropical storm warning remains in effect from the Anclotte River in Pasco County to the Suwannee River. Video Credit: CAPT Tim Gallagher/NOAA.
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