- As of Monday night, the tropical depression was centered about 95 miles south of Atlanta, with maximum sustained winds of 35 mph, the National Hurricane Center said.
Irma's powerful winds pulled water away from parts of the coast to feed the storm surge in other areas.
Others chose to stay because they thought the storm would pass on the eastern side of the state.
A total of nearly 4.5 million Florida Power & Light customers have been affected by the storm, with about 1 million getting service restored, mostly by automated devices.
"We're getting slammed right now", Josh Levy, the mayor of Hollywood, Florida, said on Sunday afternoon.
Even as forecasts showed the storm's center could enter Georgia far inland after churning up the Florida peninsula, Gov. Nathan Deal urged almost 540,000 coastal residents to evacuate, noting Irma's path remains unpredictable.
Roughly 540,000 coastal Georgia residents are under evacuation orders. That trend will continue with both storms the next 2 days as Irma tracks over the southeastern United States and José loops around itself.
The second one, in Marco Island, was a Category 3 that left the island without water and power, authorities said.
One building that did withstand the storm is Ernest Hemingway's former home in Key West, now a museum.
The Florida Forest Service has reached out to Alabama, Georgia and MS for additional post-storm crews to help clear roads and remove debris.
North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper also declared a state of emergency for all 100 counties in his state ahead of Irma.
More than 1 million residents had already lost power by Sunday morning, and it could be days before officials can provide food and water to those struggling in the aftermath of the powerful storm.
In Tallahassee, crews were pulled off the road early Monday because of high winds, according to NPR member station WFSU.
He said teams were assessing the storm's impact on the bridges that link the keys, which may not be safe to cross.
Winter Park police spokesman Garvin McComie says officers responded Monday morning following reports of a man lying in the roadway. No injuries have been reported.
As of 6 a.m., over 5.7 million customers were without power in Florida - that's roughly 58 per cent of all customers in the state. FEMA chief Brock Long said some places won't have electricity for weeks.
The Office of Agricultural Law Enforcement is staging in Orlando to conduct damage assessment and search-and-rescue missions in the Florida Keys when the storm passes.
Mandatory evacuations have been issued in two Florida counties: Monroe County and Miami-Dade County's Zones A and B. Monroe covers the Florida Keys, while Miami-Dade's Zones A and B include Miami Beach and Key Biscayne.
"This is bigger than Andrew", Scott told ABC News' Good Morning America co-anchor Robin Roberts.
Major tourist attractions, including Walt Disney World, Universal Studios and Sea World, all prepared to close Saturday.
Gov. Rick Scott announced that President Donald Trump approved his request for federal storm relief about 4 p.m.
"This is a storm that will kill you if you don't get out of the way", National Hurricane Centre meteorologist Dennis Feltgen said.
The emergency declarations have been approved by the President in the US Virgin Islands, Puerto Rico, South Carolina, Georgia and the Sunshine State - Florida. Storm surge on the northern coast of the Dominican Republic could be 3 to 5 feet, according to the National Weather Service.
Those are just a few of the items on the list-and many of them can be found around the house, if you can't make it to the store.