At 8:00 a.m. EDT the center of Hurricane Irene was located near latitude 30.0 north, longitude 77.3 west. Irene is moving toward the north near 14 mph and this motion is expected to continue during the next 24 hours, followed by a gradual turn toward the north-northeast. The core of the hurricane is forecast to pass well off the coast of northeastern Florida today, approach the coast of North Carolina tonight and pass near or over the North Carolina coast Saturday. The hurricane is forecast to move near or over the Mid-Atlantic coast Saturday night. Maximum sustained winds are near 110 mph, with higher gusts. Irene is a Category Two hurricane. Some re-intensification is possible today and Irene is expected to be near the threshold between category two and three as it reaches the North Carolina coast.