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Fay makes landfall in southwestern Florida

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MIAMI, Florida (CNN) -- Tropical Storm Fay made landfall in southwestern Florida early Tuesday, coming ashore at Cape Romano just south of Marco Island, the National Hurricane Center said.

Jason Miller of Marathon Key loads water into his truck Sunday in preparation for Fay.

Satellite image shows Tropical Storm Fay along Florida's southwest coast at 11 p.m. ET Monday.

Forecasters immediately dropped hurricane warnings for the storm as it never reached the 74 mph threshold necessary for hurricane status.

It was the third landfall for the storm, which came ashore in western Cuba Sunday night and then again over Key West Monday afternoon.

Voluntary evacuations were urged Monday evening on Marco Island, a community of about 12,000 people near Naples on southwestern Florida's coast. However, a CNN crew reported many people seemed to be staying and few had boarded windows there.

At of 5 a.m. ET Tuesday, the storm was moving north-northwest at 9 mph (15 km/hr) and was on the Florida coastline at Cape Romano, or about 55 miles (90 km) south of Fort Myers.

Maximum sustained winds were near 60 mph (95 km/hr), with higher gusts, and forecasters expected some strengthening prior to landfall. Tropical storm force winds extended up to 125 miles (205 km). Are you there? Share photos, video

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Fay is expected to continue in a north-northeasterly direction throughout the day, passing near Orlando, and entering the Atlantic as a tropical depression off the coast of northeastern Florida early Wednesday. Video Watch wind, rain batter Key West »

A tropical storm warning wraps around the bottom of the Florida peninsula from Longboat Key on the Gulf Coast to Flagler Beach on the east. The Florida Keys from Ocean Reef to the west end of the Seven Mile Bridge are also included in the warning.


Rainfall amounts up to 10 inches are expected across portions of southern and east-central Florida, with 4 to 8 inches elsewhere along the storm's path.

Isolated tornadoes are possible over the Florida Keys and the southern Florida peninsula, the center said.

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