Hurricane Irene makes landfall along New Jersey coast near Little Egg Inlet with 75-mph winds

PHILADELPHIA - August 28, 2011

RELATED: Get the latest track of Irene with the 6abc.com Hurricane Tracker.

The storm is moving north-northeast at 18 mph (28 kph).

We are currently in the strongest part of the hurricane and will remain there for a few more hours.

Irene will then move on before becoming a tropical depression by early Monday morning.

The storm is a Category 1, the least threatening on a 1-to-5 scale, and barely stronger than a tropical storm.

Nevertheless, it was still considered highly dangerous, capable of causing ruinous flooding across much of the East Coast with a combination of storm surge, high tides and 6 to 12 inches of rain.

Flood warnings and watches are in effect for the majority of the area because we are picking up a lot of rain in a short amount of time and the rain will only continue later on tonight and into the overnight hours.

The month of August alone has been the wettest month in the history of Philadelphia.

The Perkiomen, Assunpink and Brandywine creeks are expected to crest near record levels Sunday into Monday.

As for the rain, the shore is likely to receive 6-12 inches of rain with storm surge of 4 to 8 feet.

Philadelphia and the immediate suburbs are expected to receive 5-10 inches of rain with river and stream flooding.

The Lehigh Valley is expected to receive 3 to 6 inches of rain, also with river and stream flooding.

Pennsylvania, New Jersey and Delaware are under states of emergency as Irene moves closer.

Hurricane Irene's local impact

Warning that Philadelphia and southeast Pennsylvania faces the worst weather in 50 years, Mayor Michael Nutter signed a state of emergency, telling residents the move is aimed at "saving lives."

SEPTA shutdown late Saturday night, about 90 minutes ahead of schedule, because of a tornado warning.

In Delaware, a Sussex County spokesman says according to the National Weather Service, a tornado touched down in Nassau Station just southwest of Lewes.

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