What Exactly Is Storm Surge, And Why Does It Have Floridians Worried?

The National Weather Service has predicted this path of Hurricane Irma as of 2 p.m. on Sept. 8

Further cancellations are expected as the storm moves north to Georgia and the Carolinas. St. Marys police Lt. Shannon Brock said piers and boat docks were heavily damaged and many boats sunk.

A meteorologist and storm chaser who was shown in a video struggling to stay on his feet while measuring the ferocious winds of Hurricane Irma told TODAY that he knew exactly what he was getting into and took every necessary precaution. As of 2 a.m. EDT, the storm was centered about 25 miles northeast of Tampa and moving north-northwest near 15 mph.

The storm is expected to cross into Georgia on Monday, authorities said.

Here's Scott on "Good Morning America" Sunday morning telling people around the world "the biggest thing you can do now is pray". Photo by Marco Island Police.

Company officials estimate about 6 million people, representing 3.4 million customer accounts, will lose power in the Category 3 storm's wake.

Meanwhile, the city of Charlotte announced on Saturday afternoon it is opening a shelter at J.M. Alexander Middle School in Huntersville for out-of-state evacuees. The warnings come as Hurricane Irma creeps closer to the state, preparing to make landfall somewhere in Southwest Florida.

Sheriff's deputy among 1st Florida deaths from Hurricane Irma
Bridges, 42, was on her way home to pick up belongings, when her vehicle collided with another auto around 6:30 a.m. Florida Highway Patrol says two drivers were killed in a head-on crash in Hardee County Sunday morning at 6:46.

Over two dozen people are reported to have died since the storm crossed the Caribbean towards the US.

The confidence in the forecast track into Monday and Tuesday is very high for Irma to move up through Georgia and then become a depression in Alabama before passing into Tennessee on Wednesday. North Mississippi is in the cone of impact for Tuesday.

Residents have fled large parts of Florida due to the threat of extreme winds and flash flooding.

That tornado's location - well away from the hurricane's core, and in the storm's front-right quadrant (relative to the hurricane's direction) - is typical for cyclone-produced tornadoes. Schools in the state planned to close Monday.

-Weakening winds on Monday night. Wind gusts can be upwards of 60mph. But the scale of these storms and the sequence in which they struck, all put together, is unprecedented.

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