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Hurricane Matthew heads north with nearly 500,000 FPL customers without power

AsHurricane Matthew moves across the Southeast U.S., reportedthat 476,300 customers are without power and that it has restored service for177,200 as of 8 a.m. ET on Oct. 7.

Basedon its recent outagedata, the NextEra EnergyInc. utility said the hurricane has affected a total of 653,490customers. On Oct. 6, the utility warned that up to 2.5 million of its roughly 4.8 millioncustomers could lose power and sustain damage from the hurricane.

Accordingto FPL, 164,320 Brevard County customers and 43,170 Martin County customers arewithout power. The utility also reported 47,140 outages and 61,910 restorationsin Palm Beach County, where it serves 732,300 customers, and 41,800 outages and7,500 restorations in St. Lucie County, where it serves 124,400.

utilityDuke Energy FloridaLLC reported more than 82,000 customers without power shortlybefore 9 a.m. ET, including 30,616 in Volusia County, 24,349 customers in OrangeCounty and 22,935 customers in Seminole County.

HurricaneMatthew, downgraded by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration to aCategory 3 hurricane, has maximum sustained winds of 120 miles per hour as ofan 8a.m. ET bulletin. According to the advisory, the hurricane is expected tomove north late Friday, Oct. 7, or early Saturday, Oct. 8, moving near or overFlorida's east coast on Friday, and near or over Georgia and South Carolina onSaturday.

's and utility said on Twitter Oct. 6 that the utilities are braced for the storm, with crewsready to assist with restoration efforts after the storm passes.

, doing business as Santee Cooper, also said it isprepared to deal with what it said are likely "adverse effects to SanteeCooper's service area."