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Illinois National Guard sends plane in advance of Irma

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) _ The Illinois National Guard is preparing to help out again with another potentially damaging hurricane.

A Sunday National Guard statement says it has dispatched a C-130 aircraft to the U.S. Virgin Islands as Hurricane Irma bears down on the Caribbean.

A C-130 cargo plane was also sent days ago from the same central Illinois base to help with relief efforts after Harvey struck Texas. The Guard says its crews have transported more than 60 people out of danger in Texas as of Saturday.

The C-130 bound for the Caribbean was scheduled to stop in Colorado first to pick up a special disaster-relief team.

Irma is over the Atlantic and on a course that could bring it near the eastern Caribbean Sea by early this week.