Hurricane warning issued along central Gulf coast

MIAMI (AP) - The Gulf coast from far western Louisiana to the Alabama-Florida border is under a hurricane warning as Gustav nears.

The National Hurricane Center upgraded a watch to a warning early Sunday, meaning that hurricane conditions are expected in the area within the next 24 hours.

Gustav dropped to a Category 3 storm as its top winds slowed to near 125 mph. But forecasters said it is expected to regain strength and could become a Category 4 hurricane later Sunday.

Gustav was over the Gulf about 425 miles southeast of the Mississippi River's mouth at 5 a.m. Eastern time and moving northwest at about 16 mph.

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