Hurricane warnings to be put out earlier

Published: Tuesday, January 5, 2010 at 12:57 p.m.
Last Modified: Tuesday, January 5, 2010 at 12:57 p.m.

MIAMI — Government forecasters say they'll give coastal residents increased lead time when they believe a hurricane will strike.

The change means the National Hurricane Center's watches and warnings will be issued a half-day earlier than they long have, at about 36 and 48 hours ahead of an anticipated storm. It's the result of decades of incremental improvements in storm tracking.

Still, the hurricane center says it's unlikely the change will impact the way officials issue evacuation orders. It simply will buffer local officials' pleas for residents to leave when in danger.

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