Hurricane Irene's path is expected to cover much of the East Coast of the U.S. and Canada.

The maps below from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) show the probabilities that winds of certain speeds would hit various locations.

Map 1 shows the chances that winds at or above 39 mph will hit locations. Map 2 shows the probabilities for winds at or above 58 mph and map 3 shows probabilities for winds at or above 74 mph.

The probabilities are denoted by color, with green spanning 5 percent to 30 percent, yellow 30 percent to 50 percent, orange 50 percent to 70 percent, etc.

The big safety concern is for winds above 74 mph (map 3). The following is the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Scale from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) that shows the potential damages of such winds.

As of 5:00 p.m. ET on Friday, a hurricane warning has been issued from north of Sandy Hook to Sagamore Beach Massachusetts, a stretch that includes New York City, Long Island, Long Island Sound, coastal Connecticut and Rhode island, Block Island, Marthas Vineyard and Nantucket.

The next advisory will be issued at 8:00 p.m. ET.

Hurricane preparation tips and evacuation recommendations can be found on government Web sites.

For example, the Web site for New York City is here and the Web site for Suffolk County (Long Island) is here.

Hurricane Irene is expected to hit North Carolina by Saturday afternoon and the New York City region by Saturday night.

Below are map 1, map 2, and map 3 (in ascending order) from the NOAA.