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Still at the beaches? You need to leave

I know, it's a beautiful day, and you want to stay in your beach chair. Maybe you'll ride out the storm and snap some pictures of the cool waves.

Don't. Pack your stuff, batten the hatches and leave. This is a serious storm coming your way tomorrow. If you don't care about yourself, think of the people who love you, and those who will have to try to rescue you or recover your remains.

Here are some forecast items to think about:

1. Irene's top sustained winds are forecast to reach 120 mph when it makes landfall on the Outer Banks Saturday.

2. Barrier Islands from North Carolina to Ocean City are under evacuation orders.

3. Hurricane Warnings are posted from Hatteras to Sandy Hook, NJ. Flash Flood Warnings or Flood Watches are posted for Maryland, Delaware and New Jersey.

4. Forecasters expected 6 to 10 inches of rain, with a potential for 12 inches, during Irene's passage.

5. Flooding is the biggest single cause of death in hurricanes.

6. The forecast track takes the center of Irene right up the beach line to New York.

7. Waves will begin building tonight, reaching 12 to 15 feet Saturday through early Sunday.

8. The storm surge will be 4 to 8 feet in southern portions of the Chesapeake Bay and on the ocean side of Delmarva.

9. A State of Emergency has been declared in Maryland and Virginia.

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