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Irate Irene


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HURRICANE Irene hit New York today, as rain and stronger winds began to lash the city.


"The edge of the hurricane is finally upon us," Mayor Michael Bloomberg told a press conference.


Mayor Bloomberg said that with mandatory evacuation orders handed to some 370,000 people in low-lying neighbourhoods and public transport completely shut down, "the time for evacuations is over".


"At this point, if you haven't evacuated, our suggestion is you stay where you are," he said.


"The bottom line is the storm is now starting to hit New York City.


"Nature is a lot stronger than the rest of us."

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The following deaths are being attributed to Hurricane Irene:


* An 11-year-old boy who died when a tree crashed down on an apartment building in Newport News, Virginia;

* A 15-year-old girl who reportedly died when her father's car crashed at an intersection without a working stoplight in Goldsboro, North Carolina;

* A man killed by a falling branch in Nashville, North Carolina;

* A resident who suffered a heart attack as he boarded up his home in Onslow County, North Carolina;

* A driver who died when his car hydroplaned into a tree in Pitt County, North Carolina;

* One person who died when a tree fell on a car in Brunswick County, Virginia;

* A surfer in Florida killed in heavy waves.

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