Hurricane Ian steers towards South Carolina | USA TODAY

Hurricane Ian increased to a Category 1 hurricane as South Carolina braces for the storm.

RELATED: Drone footage captures Hurricane Ian's destruction in Fort Myers Beach | USA TODAY

The large system, which had been downgraded to a tropical storm on its way out of Florida and into the Atlantic ocean, is expected to head toward the Carolinas and Georgia. Ian's sustained winds increased to 85 mph late Thursday and it could bring "life-threatening flooding, storm surge and strong winds'' to those states, the National Hurricane Center said.

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