The US National Hurricane Centre (NHC) said in a statement that hurricane Dorian has been downgraded from a Category 3 to Category 2 storm.
"The hurricane will then move dangerously close to the Florida east coast late today through Wednesday evening, very near the Georgia and South Carolina coasts Wednesday night and Thursday, and near or over the North Carolina coast late Thursday and Thursday night", the US National Hurricane Centre said in its latest bulletin.
In addition, Dorian has begun moving slowly toward the northwest at 2 mph, the NHC added.
Data from reconnaissance aircraft indicate that the maximum sustained winds are near 110 miles (170 kilometres) per hour (mph) with higher gusts, the bulletin said. A category 3 hurricane has maximum sustained winds of 110-129 mph (175-207 kilometres).
Earlier in the day, the NHC reported that Hurricane Dorian had been downgraded from Category 4 to Category 3, saying that it had remained stationary offshore of Grand Bahama Island, with maximum sustained winds at 120 miles per hour.
Current #Dorian Hurricane Warnings in effect as of 11 AM EDT Sept 3:— National Hurricane Center (@NHC_Atlantic) September 3, 2019
* Grand Bahama and the Abacos in the NW Bahamas
* Jupiter Inlet FL to Ponte Vedra Beach FL
* North of Edisto Beach SC to South Santee River SChttps://t.co/tW4KeGdBFb pic.twitter.com/m1wt570WUG
The hurricane is expected to travel northwest and hit the US state of Florida later in the day. Aside from Florida, the states of Georgia, South Carolina, North Carolina, and Virginia have declared a state of emergency ahead of the storm’s arrival.
In the first days of September, several US states declared a national emergency following a "catastrophic" Category 5 hurricane that was feared to become the most powerful storm in decades. Evacuation orders were therefore issued for all coastal counties of Florida.