Four dead, millions without power as Irma pummels Florida

But some around Florida are choosing to stay, a rite of passage for many in the state who boast about the storms they weathered: Camille, Andrew, Katrina and others. Here in Miami, our Alex Perez was with one of those crews securing one of those massive cranes.

An 8 p.m. curfew has been imposed for Miami for the next two nights, and no one is allowed out on the streets until they're cleared, Miami Beach officials said.

City officials said they were using geo-fencing, a 911 communication system, as well as social media, to contact residents in the area.

The tower cranes are "designed to withstand winds up to 145 miles per hour, not a Category 5 Hurricane", the city said in a news release this week.

During that time, a resident said he heard a loud boom and looked out of the apartment to see the crane falling.

City of Miami Fire was unable to reach a woman in labor early Sunday morning due to storm winds, so she was forced to deliver her baby at home, the City of Miami confirmed. "Consider that the counterbalances on tower cranes weigh about 20,000 to 30,000 pounds".

"I'd rather take the chance and be here, maybe get out and help other people around here", he said. "It will be done by wind-blown debris".

Although it is likely that the eye will move near or over the Lower Keys Sunday morning, its angle of approach to the west coast of Florida makes it hard to pinpoint exactly where Irma will cross the Florida Gulf Coast.

A tornado could have ripped the crane loose, Whiteman said.

A stunning video showed powerful winds ripping off the roof of a Miami house on Sunday.

"Water still rising in downtown Miami along Brickell Avenue", WSVN reporter Brian Entin said. The tweet concludes: "Actually it's insulation from a high rise under construction".

Andy Castaldi, head of catastrophe perils at the reinsurance company Swiss Re, said the cranes added a terrifying element to the hurricane hazards that Miami potentially faces, including airborne debris and flooding exacerbated by rising sea levels. Reporter: Even if he's ordered to he says he's not evacuating.

Boak reported from Washington, D.C.

  • Wendy Palmer