The National Weather Service in Peachtree City issued a tropical storm warning Sunday for Macon and is not ruling out that portions of south Georgia could see Irma still at hurricane strength Monday.
Hurricane Irma remains a very large storm, almost three times the size of the state of Florida, and meteorologists are now predicting it will make a northwest turn sometime this weekend. The order now applies to the entire state.
Watches and warnings are now beginning to extend to North Florida.
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Deal made the declaration based on a recommendation from the state's Emergency Operations Command and ahead of heavy rains, strong wind and potential flooding from Hurricane Irma. "Expect extensive damage from wind -widespread trees and power lines down with widespread, long term power outages, and downed trees on structures", the NWS said in a Saturday afternoon briefing.
The strongest winds are likely to be east of the Apalachicola and Chattahoochee Rivers.
Hurricane force wind gusts (74 miles per hour or higher) are possible over southwest Georgia, the Big Bend of Florida and the far eastern portions of Houston and Henry Counties.