Video: Hurricane Irma makes her presence felt bringing flooding, howling winds to South Carolina

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Associated Press

The remnants of Hurricane Irma forced Atlanta's international airport - the world's busiest passenger airport - to cancel nearly 200 flights. The storm also claimed three lives in South Carolina and two in Georgia.

The remnants of Hurricane Irma is causing flooding in the state with early reports of deaths.
Source: Associated Press

The flights cancelled at Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport put the total number of interrupted trips there due to Irma at about 1,300, spokesman Andrew Gobeil said.

The airport remained operational, with flights taking off and landing. However, some passengers were forced to spend the night at the airport. Gobeil said he didn't have the exact number.

Georgia's Gov. Nathan Deal lifted a mandatory evacuation order for six coastal counties. The order allows local authorities to determine when residents may return home.

Deal called the storm an "unusual" in that it affected the entire state, rather than being localised.

For that reason, Deal said, recovery "could be a bit slower."

"This is a different kind of natural disaster. We have not had one like this in the state of Georgia for a long time," Deal said in a news conference.

More than 1.2 million Georgia Power and Electric Membership Corp. customers were without power.

The utility companies said they would continue to assess damage as power is restored. The Alabama Power reported 20,000 outages mostly in eastern Alabama as the remnants of Irma toppled tree and power lines, but didn't cause major damage. The utilities said repairs could take several days.

In Atlanta, people nervously watched towering oak trees as the city, 250 miles inland, experienced its first tropical storm warning. Metropolitan Atlanta Rapid Transit Authority resumed full service Tuesday.

Weakened into a tropical depression after strafing the Caribbean and Florida, Irma still had enough force when it swirled into Georgia to cause significant damage.

Heavy rain and strong winds caused flooding along the coast, downed power lines and sent trees crashing onto homes. Traffic flowed easily on normally jammed Atlanta highways.

In Georgia, a man in his 50s was killed just outside Atlanta when a tree fell on his house, Sandy Springs police Sgt. Sam Worsham said.

A woman died when a tree fell on a vehicle in a private driveway, the Forsyth County Sheriff's Office said on its website. Martin Eason said in an interview with the AP that the victim was his mother, Nancy.

Some 540,000 people were ordered to evacuate days earlier from Savannah and the rest of Georgia's coast.

Irma sent 1.2m of ocean water into downtown Charleston, South Carolina, as the storm's centre passed 400 kilometres away. City officials urged residents to stay off the streets.

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