WASHINGTON – Irma, the most powerful hurricane ever recorded in the Atlantic Ocean, was downgraded on Monday to a tropical depression as it advanced through the southeastern United States, according to the US National Hurricane Center (NHC).
At 11:00 pm (0300 GMT Tuesday), Irma packed maximum sustained winds of up to 55 kilometers (35 miles) per hour and was located 10 km south of Columbus, Georgia, and 150 km south-southwest of Atlanta, Georgia.
The cyclone was moving at a speed of 24 km/h towards the northwest, and it is expected to move into Alabama soon and then into western Tennessee by late Monday.
Irma left around 30 dead on its path through the Caribbean and recorded winds of up to 295 km/h, which converted it into a powerful category 5 hurricane.
In the US, where it made landfall on Sunday, it has caused heavy flooding, left about 10 dead and about 6.5 million households without electricity.