Hurricane Irma: Florida wakes up to flooding and blackouts – live updates
Follow latest developments as Irma moves up the west coast of Florida. Storm downgraded to a category 1 storm with winds of less than 100mph
- Full report: Irma hits Florida with surges and flooding
- Evacuees face a desperate plight at Florida shelters as Irma strikes
- What we know so far about Hurricane Irma
- If you’ve been affected by the storm and its effects, you can share your story here
Had the center of Irma hit Florida 20 to 30 miles (32-50 kilometers) to the east its impact would have been much worse, meteorologists have told AP.
Florida can thank Cuba, where it did hit as a Category 5 storm, said Maue and Jeff Masters, meteorology director for Weather Underground.
Irma would probably have hit Florida as a Category 5 hurricane if it had missed Cuba, Masters said.
More than 750 health workers have arrived in Antigua, Barbuda, Saint Kitts, Nevis, Saint Lucia, the Bahamas, Dominica and Haiti.
They have been told to follow the guidelines of the Ministry of Public Health (Minsap) and to contribute to aiding the recovery of regions that have been hit by the hurricane.