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For days, forecasters had warned that Irma was taking dead aim at the Miami area and the rest of Florida's Atlantic coast.

A Hurricane Warning has been changed to a Tropical Storm Warning from Jupiter Inlet southward around the Florida peninsula to Bonita Beach, as well as for the Florida Keys and Florida Bay.

In Miami, one of two dozen construction cranes looming over the skyline collapsed atop a high-rise in Irma's 100mph winds.

Today, flooding in Charleston, Savannah, and breaking records in Jacksonville as what was Hurricane Irma moves north, while Floridians statewide start to assess the destruction left by this giant storm.

The storm is forecast to hit states such as Georgia and SC on Monday afternoon, before later moving into Alabama - albeit in a far weaker state.

The Keys felt Irma's full fury when it came ashore as a Category 4 storm with 130 miles per hour (209 kph) winds. Its eye finally spun out of Florida on Monday and was moving inland, first over south Georgia as the storm system gradually weakened.

There's room for more, County Administrator Mike Merrill said, but he urged people to stay put for now. In the Caribbean, at least 24 were people were killed during Irma's destructive trek across exclusive islands known as the vacation playground for the rich.

Almost 7 million people in the Southeast were warned to evacuate, including 6.4 million in Florida alone.

Georgia reported more than 570,000 homes and businesses without electricity, and there were 80,000 in SC. Nonetheless areas of Tennessee, Alabama and western MS are expected to receive heavy rain as the tropical storm passes through.

Southeast Florida: In Southeast Florida, spiral bands continued to unleash tropical-storm-force winds. "I think that Irma had stronger winds at its landfall that even Harvey did". It doesn't mean it doesn't exist. "We want to help them in any way we can", he said.

More news: Jose spares Barbuda as hurricane veers away from island wrecked by Irma

Expected to be even more risky than the powerful winds are the storm surges that threaten Florida's coastal cities.

"What we really fear more than anything is that storm surge", Buckhorn told CNN's Anderson Cooper on Sunday.

There has been some flooding in the centre of Naples but it is believed to be fresh water.

Meanwhile, a woman in Miami had no choice but to deliver her own baby - with medical personnel coaching her on the phone because the emergency services were unable to reach her. Emergency crews made rescues throughout the night.

In Georgia, utilities reported over 1.1 million customers without power on Tuesday, down from a peak of around 1.3 million late Monday. Many have to rely on food they stored before the hurricane's arrival. "There were a few people that stayed behind in Summerland Key, one man who lost his roof but was okay". Chatham County, which includes Savannah, sustained massive flooding due to the storm, a surge of 4.7 feet and a high tide, known locally as a king tide.

Corey Smith, a UPS driver who rode out the hurricane in Key Largo, said Tuesday that power was out on the island, there was very limited gas and supermarkets were closed. "Shingles are coming off". On Monday, roughly half the stations in Jacksonville, Tampa, West Palm Beach and Fort Myers were empty. "And here we are".

The wind was already picking up in St Petersburg, some 400 miles north the Keys, and people began bracing for the onslaught. But the storm weakened to a Category 2 approaching that area. "I know for our entire state, especially the Keys, it's going to be a long road". I just hope everybody survived.

Coastal waters could rise 10 to 15 feet above normally dry land in sections of Southwest Florida, inundating homes, businesses and roads, an "imminent danger", according to the Hurricane Center.

The governor activated all 7,000 members of the Florida National Guard, and 30,000 guardsmen from elsewhere were on standby.


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