Hurricane Florence downgraded to a Category 3 storm

The 11 a.m. track on Hurricane Florence. (WPEC)

Florence is still a very powerful category 4 hurricane as it bears down on the Carolina coast.

As of 2 p.m. Wednesday, the center of Florence is located 435 miles southeast of Wilmington, North Carolina. The storm is packing 125 mph sustained winds with higher gusts and there is a chance for further strengthening as the storm moves closer to the coast. It is moving northwest at 16 mph.

The storm is expected to slow down considerably by late Thursday into Friday, so the chance of historic rainfall is very likely.

Hurricane-force winds extend outward to 70 miles from the center and tropical storm force winds out to 175 miles.

Florence will pass between Bermuda and the Bahamas today and enter the hurricane warning area of the Carolinas by Thursday or Friday and move slowly near the coastline through Saturday.

Astronauts are getting a great view of Hurricane Florence from space.

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For the latest updates and interactive tracking map, visit the CBS12 Hurricane Center.