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US East Coast Braces for Storm Bringing Rain, Snow, Wind

A tree is blown over as the region experiences high winds, March 2, 2018 in Washington.

The residents of the U.S. East Coast are bracing for a major Nor'easter storm Friday that is forecast to bring strong winds, snow and heavy rain that could flood coasts from Maine to North Carolina.

Federal government offices in Washington closed Friday.

The National Weather Service says heavy rain is expected for coastal areas from New Jersey to eastern Massachusetts.

The service said all of Rhode Island is under flood and high wind watches through Sunday morning.

A meteorologist warned about the threat of falling trees with the high winds and the sustained rain which softens the ground.

The heaviest snowfall is expected in parts of western New York into northern Pennsylvania, with as much as 20 to 30 centimeters.

Heavy snow has already accumulated in portions of New York state and more is forecast for Friday, the weather service said.

Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker has called up 200 National Guard to help with the storm response.

Utility companies along the East Coast say they have additional crews on standby to deal with expected outages.