DISASTERS

The Latest: hurricane-like winds still batter North Carolina

  • South Edgecombe Fire and Rescue workers rescue several dogs that were trapped in homes flooded by rising water from Town Creek in Pinetops, N.C. on Sunday, Oct. 9, 2016. Hurricane Matthew's torrential rains triggered severe flooding in North Carolina on Sunday as the deteriorating storm made its exit to the sea, and thousands of people had to be rescued from their homes and cars.  (Chris Seward/The Charlotte Observer via AP)

    South Edgecombe Fire and Rescue workers rescue several dogs that were trapped in homes flooded by rising water from Town Creek in Pinetops, N.C. on Sunday, Oct. 9, 2016. Hurricane Matthew's torrential rains triggered severe flooding in North Carolina on Sunday as the deteriorating storm made its exit to the sea, and thousands of people had to be rescued from their homes and cars. (Chris Seward/The Charlotte Observer via AP)  (The Associated Press)

  • People stop to look and take photos of the floodwaters washing over highway 58 in Nashville N.C., seen from the highway 64 overpass, on Sunday, Oct. 9, 2016. Hurricane Matthew's torrential rains triggered severe flooding in North Carolina on Sunday as the deteriorating storm made its exit to the sea, and thousands of people had to be rescued from their homes and cars.  (Chris Seward/The Charlotte Observer via AP)

    People stop to look and take photos of the floodwaters washing over highway 58 in Nashville N.C., seen from the highway 64 overpass, on Sunday, Oct. 9, 2016. Hurricane Matthew's torrential rains triggered severe flooding in North Carolina on Sunday as the deteriorating storm made its exit to the sea, and thousands of people had to be rescued from their homes and cars. (Chris Seward/The Charlotte Observer via AP)  (The Associated Press)

  • A fallen tree on Rivermont Drive in Newport News, Va., covers a new car owned by Skip Williams of Newport News. Williams moved the car overnight to avoid another tree he thought might fall but was unlucky after this tree fell atop his new car. (Adrin Snider/Daily Press  via AP)

    A fallen tree on Rivermont Drive in Newport News, Va., covers a new car owned by Skip Williams of Newport News. Williams moved the car overnight to avoid another tree he thought might fall but was unlucky after this tree fell atop his new car. (Adrin Snider/Daily Press via AP)  (The Associated Press)

The Latest on Hurricane Matthew, which was downgraded to a post-tropical cyclone early Sunday (all times local):

8:20 a.m.

The U.S. National Hurricane Center says hurricane-force wind gusts are battering North Carolina's Outer Banks, even though Matthew was downgraded from a hurricane to a post-tropical cyclone early Sunday.

The center said in its 8 a.m. ET Sunday update that the center of the storm was about 60 miles (95 kilometers) east-southeast of Cape Hatteras, North Carolina, and had maximum sustained winds of near 75 mph (120 kpm).

A hurricane watch was still in effect for parts of coastal North Carolina, including Pamlico and Albemarle sounds, for the next 6 to twelve hours.

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Matthew has been downgraded to a post-tropical cyclone as it continues what appears to be the last leg of its march up the East Coast.

The U.S. National Hurricane Center said in its 5 a.m. ET Sunday update that the center of the storm was about 30 miles southeast of Cape Hatteras, North Carolina, and had sustained winds of about 75 mph (120 kpm).

The previous Category 5 hurricane had been weakening even as it lashed Georgia and the Carolinas on Saturday, leaving in its wake millions of Americans relieved that one of the most fearsome storms on record in the U.S. wasn't that bad after all.

The hurricane was blamed for at least 10 deaths in the U.S., including that of a 68-year-old Georgia man who died when two trees fell on his home. And hundreds were left dead in Matthew's wake in Haiti.

By Saturday night, North Carolina felt the brunt of Matthew, with more than a foot of rain falling in the southeastern part of the state, causing life-threatening flash flooding.