>> Packing 130 mile an hour winds, Hurricane Irma battering South Florida Sunday, knocking out power in nearly 2 million homes and businesses. The storm pummeling the Florida Keys on the way to the mainland, threatening the Gulf Coast with potentially catastrophic flooding, packing shelters, and prompting one of the largest evacuations in US history.
Reuters Andy Sullivan is in Miami.>> Here in Miami it looks like we're going to be spared the worst of Irma's wrath. But keep in mind that this storm is so big that the entire Florida peninsula is likely to be affected. We've had reports of tornadoes in the region.
We're experiencing wind gusts of up to 70 miles an hour. That turns the rain sideways, makes it feel like needles when it's hitting your face. Behind me, the lake is a mass of whitecaps and we are hearing that this is just the beginning. Conditions are expected to deteriorate throughout the day.
>> Irma killing 22 people as it tore through the Caribbean, already claiming at least one life in Florida. One woman in Miami's little Haiti neighborhood forced to deliver her own baby with emergency responders unable to reach her due to the storm.>> The biggest thing right now is pray for us.
It's gonna hit my hometown. It's gonna devastate my home town. 10 to 15 feet of storm surge above ground. That's gonna be hard on, I don't know how anybody's gonna survive, but it's gonna go all the way up to Fort Meyer's Sarasota, Tampa, St. Pete. And then we're gonna have storm surge.
>> Irma is expected to cause billions of dollars of damage in Florida, the third most populous US state. Hurricane and tropical storm warnings stretch throughout almost all of Florida and into Georgia and South Carolina, home to more than 20 million people.