Five things you need to know Friday

1. The countdown is on for Irma impacting the U.S. Here's everything you need to know

Hurricane Irma is now a Category 4 hurricane as it continues to track toward south Florida.

As of 5 a.m. Friday, the National Hurricane Center reported sustained winds of 155 mph with gusts of 190 mph as the dangerous hurricane tracked across the southeastern Bahama islands with a path set on south Florida. The storm is expected to bring 150 mph winds to the Key Largo area late Saturday into early Sunday before turning north over central Florida.

The latest advisory continues the westward shift in Irma's track. After turning in Florida, the storm is expected to move north into Georgia by early Tuesday as a tropical storm and then even further west near Nashville, Tennessee. This has reduced the biggest threats for North Carolina and the Charlotte area, which will both see wind and rain from the storm.

"The shift in the track means it will have a direct hit over south Florida as a Category 4 hurricane," Chief Meteorologist Brad Panovich explained. Click here for the latest.

RELATED: Florida braces for Hurricane Irma: Watches, warnings now in effect

RELATED: Charlotte Motor Speedway to open doors to Irma evacuees

RELATED: Live Blog: Irma preps in the Carolinas

2. Mayor Roberts may suspend campaign to focus on Irma efforts

harlotte Mayor Jennifer Roberts who faces a primary next Tuesday said she may temporarily suspend campaigning so she can focus on hurricane Irma. In an interview with NBC Charlotte, Roberts said, “We are encouraging people to vote early because we don’t know that we will have an election on Tuesday. It really depends on what happens.”

Michael Dickerson who is Director of the Mecklenburg County Board of Elections says a final decision to postpone Tuesday’s primary will be made in Raleigh by State Elections Director Kim Strach.

“She is still monitoring and she is following it to let us know, hopefully sooner rather than later,” Dickerson said.

Roberts said her priority is the safety of everyone as the storm approaches.

3. Last-ditch effort on partial Obamacare repeal underway

On Friday, a bipartisan group of House members who call themselves the Problem Solvers Caucus are expected to discuss a new health care proposal. The governors hope to break the stalemate over health care, sending Congress a proposal in late August that aims to bolster the individual market, increase state flexibility and restrain rising premiums.

The plan — spearheaded by Ohio Republican Gov. John Kasich and Colorado Democratic Gov. John Hickenlooper — would initially preserve and strengthen key elements of the Affordable Care Act and then give states flexibility to unravel some of Obamacare's coverage requirements.  

4. Magnitude 8.2 earthquake hits southern Mexico, felt in capital

A powerful earthquake is shaking Mexico's capital city, causing people to flee swaying buildings and knocking out lights to part of the city.

The U.S. Geological Survey said the earthquake had a magnitude of 8.2 and its epicenter was 165 kilometers (102 miles) west of Tapachula in southern Chiapas state. It had a depth of 35 kilometers.

The death toll in the massive earthquake in Mexico has risen to at least five people, including two children in Tabasco state.

5. 'Bored' teen turned brother into creepy clown from Stephen King's 'it'

What do you get when you’re a bored teenager, have a baby brother, a talent for photography and a fondness for creepy clowns?

Well, ask Meridian, Mississippi young man, Eagan Tilghman.

In a post made on Twitter, Tilgman said he got bored one day and decided to do a photoshoot with his 3-year-old brother, Louie, and the results were, well, we’ll just get out of the way of these images… Click here to check them out.

© 2017 WCNC.COM


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