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Irma expected to weaken to tropical depression by Tuesday afternoon

13 September 2017

He said he has homes there and in Houston, which was hit by heavy flooding from Hurricane Harvey two weeks ago. The death toll from the storm also rose in the Caribbean, where at least 34 people are confirmed dead.

Off Florida's southern tip, authorities were stopping people to check documentation such as proof of residency or business ownership before allowing them back into the Upper Keys.

By Monday, Irma had weakened to a Category 1 storm, according to the National Hurricane Center, as it made its way up Florida's Gulf Coast toward the St. Petersburg-Tampa region. Utility crews were already on the streets there clearing downed trees and utility lines. It was located 30 miles east of Cedar Key in Florida.

He noted that FEMA was continuing to rescue people stranded by flooding around Jacksonville, in the state's northeast. Storm surges also swamped some coastal areas in Georgia and SC.

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A tropical storm warning was issued for the first time ever in Atlanta, and school was cancelled in communities around the state. The surge in Charleston came from the Atlantic Ocean, and forecasters predicted that the water would push about a mile inland.

In Naples, near where Irma made its second landfall in southwest Florida after initially striking the Keys, winds reached as high as 142 miles per hour.

County officials said crews are working to reopen the major USA 1 route as quickly as possible. Powerful Hurricane Irma roared into Florida and knocked out power to more than 3 million homes and businesses in Florida on Sunday. At least two dozen people died in the storm there and reports suggested almost all buildings on some islands had been destroyed.

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A Key Largo restaurant and bar called Snappers - where Weir had interviewed people on Thursday as the storm was still days away - is now "completely gone", Weir said.

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The governor described overturned mobile homes, washed-ashore boats and rampant flood damage.

He says there is "devastation" and he hopes everyone who stayed behind survived Irma. Nearly every mobile home park in the Keys had overturned homes, according to the governor.

The US House of Representatives canceled votes scheduled for Monday because of the hurricane. Another man was killed after he lost control of a truck that carried a generator as winds whipped at tropical-storm strength, officials said. Irma did not cause as much damage in Florida as some forecasters had feared.

Florida Keys devastated by Irma, says governor
Irma made landfall on the Florida Keys as a Category 4 hurricane Sunday, but the full extent of the damage there is still unknown. Irma battered Cuba on Saturday with deafening winds and relentless rain . "They said this one is going to be bigger than Andrew".

Irma expected to weaken to tropical depression by Tuesday afternoon