Gulf Coast braces for landfall of Hurricane Nate

The storm, which strengthened to a Category 1 hurricane, is expected to make landfall in the U.S. between late Saturday night and early Sunday morning.
3:45 | 10/07/17

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Transcript for Gulf Coast braces for landfall of Hurricane Nate
Great to have you, Tony and Jon. We will begin with hurricane Nate. It's barreling through the gulf of Mexico. Already it has left a path of destruction in Nicaragua. You can see the damage that it's done, boats swept aground. Some crashing into buildings. Roads washed away by the powerful winds and Iran. It slammed into beaches or beach cities like cancun overnight as it crosses the yucatan peninsula. This is where Nate is headed now. States of emergency have been declared in Louisiana, Alabama and Mississippi and some towns are facing curfews or mandatory evacuation orders. Hurricane and tropical storm warnings in effect from new Orleans to the Florida panhandle with Nate expected to make landfall in less than 24 hours. Bracing for that. We have team coverage this moing but we begin with ABC's senior meteorologist rob Marciano who is tracking the storm for us from the studio this morning. Rob, good morning. Good morning, Paula. Category 1 potentially category 2 storm. Do not discount this storm considering the destruction it's already done and the path it's going to take. Right now about 300 miles off the coast of southeast Louisiana. And heading in that direction at 22 miles an hour. So this one is moving much faster than the other storms this year and so it will be getting tropical storm conditions later on this afternoon with rain band as prochiloing New Orleans, mobile, even Pensacola and making landfall sometime late tonight as a category 1, maybe a 2 in the earlier morning hours. Look at this, goes across Birmingham and up through the northeast. Everybody will get a piece of this. Let's zoom in closer. Where the winds will be, lopsided storm and most will be east of the center but look at New Orleans. Dangerously close to that center. We could see storm surges up to eight or nine feet. The crescent city certainly vulnerable to hurricanes where we find ABC's Steve osunsami this morning. Good morning, Steve. Reporter: Good morning to you, rob. We were at lake pontchartrain hoping to broadcast live from there but had to move in a hurry because this morning, they have closed the floodgates in anticipation of this storm. This now hurricane is coming to the region at a poor time because of the east winds and the high tides, there is already water on the roads in some of the low-lying areas. This deadly storm would not let up overnight in Central America. Washing away roads and homes, nearly two dozen people across this region have lost their lives. In Nicaragua it came to this, stranded families using ropes to get out of the rushing floodwaters. It was so much moving water it opened up this giant sinkhole. The storm is now strengthened into a category 1 hurricane and it's now speeding towards American cities on the gulf coast. This is now a state of emergency from Louisiana to Georgia. Thousands of families are under a mandatory evacuation this morning. We do not know exactly where it will land and so we're preparing for the worst. Reporter: In Louisiana, president trump has approved the governor's predisaster emergency declaration and federal resources are available. No one should take this lightly. In New Orleans, families already dealing with water from the high tides are more than frustrated that a dozen of the city's drainage pumps are not working. Billy Ross packed up and left last night. But not before putting everything he had up high. If you don't pick it up, you lose it by the flood. Reporter: Six feet of storm surge he loses everything. He's expecting five. When they tell you to get out, you get out. Once you get trapped in, ain't nobody coming to help you. Reporter: City officials in lei, mobile, biloxi are telling residents that now is the time. This morning to finish their preparations. In New Orleans there are sandbags available at every fire station. Paula and Jon. The officials say preparing for the absolute worst. Steve osunsami, thanks for your reporting from New Orleans this

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