Along the coast, where storm surges started flooding towns and cities, Savanna had been ordered to evacuate for the second time in less than a year.
Hurricane Irma, which left fatalities in its march through the Caribbean and made landfall in Cudjoe Key at 9:10 Sunday morning, has utility crews already laboring -- mostly in South Florida -- with more than 1 and a half million customers in the dark Sunday morning, the Associated Press reported. Officials said it could take weeks to restore electricity. No major storm damage was reported in Alabama.
Alabama and Mississippi: Irma, though weakening, should slide over northern portions of the states on later on Monday and into Tuesday. An evacuation order is also in effect for the Georgia coast, while Alabama, North Carolina and SC have all declared states of emergency.
The storm was passing north of the Leeward Islands at 2 p.m. ET Saturday, the hurricane center said, and was moving northwest at 13 miles per hour.
Residents should make basic preparations to go without power or water for 72 hours, local city and county governments say. But that doesn't mean all Floridians should try to go back home. "It's disgusting, what we saw", Scott said. In other parts of the island chain, the closure of USA 1, a major artery that connects the islands with the mainland, was a prime concern. They also have asked the federal government to kick in 11 million meals and millions more gallons of water, plus almost 700 cases of baby supplies. "I wouldn't rule anything out with this storm". This watch continues from 8 a.m. Monday to midnight Monday.
Governor Cooper said the highest concerns were flooding and mudslides in the mountain regions of western North Carolina as well as hurricane-strength winds along the SC border.
A massive oak tree fell Monday on a two-story apartment building he owns in Columbia by the University of SC.
Further inland, a hurricane warning was in place for Valdosta and surrounding Lowndes County, where Interstate 75 crosses the Georgia-Florida line.
Irma tore through Cuba as a Category 5 storm before it reached Florida, killing at least ten people.
The prime minister of Antigua and Barbuda, Gaston Browne, described Barbuda as "barely habitable" after Irma slammed into the island with 185 m/p/h (297 km/p/h) winds, destroying homes, snapping trees and killing at least one person there.
With the arrival of what is potentially one of the most devastating storms to ever hit Florida, officials have set aside 3.2 million liters of water, filled 67 trailers with meals, and amassed 24,000 tarps.