Florida's state governor has told residents ordered to leave their homes to go to shelters and avoid the roads as Hurricane Irma approaches.
Rick Scott said it was now too late to drive away from the danger areas.
After devastating several Caribbean islands, Irma is lashing Cuba with strong winds and heavy rain, and is due to make landfall in Florida this morning.
Some 6.3 million people, more than 25% of the US state's population, have been ordered to evacuate.
The hurricane made landfall on the Sabana‑Camaguey Archipelago, in Cuba's north‑east, late on Friday as a category five storm but has now weakened to a category three.
The US National Hurricane Center said that Hurricane Irma has been down graded to a Category 3.
Meanwhile, Irma was the first category five hurricane to hit Cuba in more than 80 years, and it is expected to strengthen again before reaching Florida.
At least 20 people are so far known to have died as Hurricane Irma progressed across the Caribbean throughout the week.
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