Obama declares state of emergency in Florida as Hurricane Matthew approaches

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WASHINGTON —President Barack Obama has declared an emergency in the state of Florida and has ordered federal aid to supplement state, tribal, and local response efforts to Hurricane Matthew.

Obama’s action authorizes the Department of Homeland Security and the Federal Emergency Management Agency to coordinate efforts to alleviate the suffering caused by the hurricane.

The directive applies to more than two dozen counties in Florida.

Emergency declarations are designed to help provide emergency services to protect lives and property, and to lessen the threat of a catastrophe.