Capital Region native rides out Hurricane Irma in Fort Myers

Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published broadcast rewritten or redistributed

Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published broadcast rewritten or redistributed

The storm is now moving through the state of Florida, with Tampa braced for a potentially life-threatening storm surge.

Hurricane Irma weakened from a Category 5 and hit the Keys on Sunday as a Category 4 storm.

The National Hurricane Centre said the storm "should continue to lose strength and fall below hurricane intensity" during the day, as it continues its path northwards.

FPL, the biggest power company in Florida, said more than 3.6 million of its customers were without power by 6 a.m. (1000 GMT Monday).

The storm is bringing winds of 130 miles per hour and is expected to go up the state's west coast, according to The New York Times. More than 100,000 were in the dark in Georgia.

In usually bustling Miami. residents who hadn't fled the city hunkered down as water rushed in among luxury high rises.and two constructions crains collapsed.

Overnight, Irma was downgraded to a category 2 storm, but continued to wreak havoc along the west coast.

At least three deaths were reported in Florida in relation to the hurricane. A storm surge of 10 feet was recorded there and appliances and furniture were seen floating away, according to AP.

Authorities on Sunday said that at least 4 people in Florida had died, The New York Times reported. Affected states include Florida, Georgia, Alabama, Tennessee, South Carolina and North Carolina.

Irma is continuing to slide off to the north at 14mph as a category 2 hurricane with winds of 110mph and will be heading for Fort Myers before taking aim on Tampa later this evening.

On the Atlantic coast off South Carolina, Hilton Head Island's 42,000 residents were under an evacuation order this morning. VIDEO: INTENSE WIND, RAIN AS IRMA PASSED OVER NAPLESMany streets in Naples were blocked by fallen trees Monday, making them virtually impassable.

Storm surge is caused when the winds from the hurricane literally push the ocean onto the shore.

Tropical storm warnings have been discontinued for the Florida Keys and surrounding areas, and the storm surge warning is discontinued for the Keys and Miami areas.

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