Hundreds of thousands of residents in Florida were without electricity Friday morning after Hurricane Matthew made landfall along the state's coast hours earlier. More than 650,000 Florida Power and Light customers have been affected since Thursday, although about 20 percent of them have since had their electricity restored as utility workers continue to respond to outages, according to the Weather Channel.
Nearly 584,000 customers from northern Florida to its southern tip were without power as of 9 a.m. EDT according to the Florida Public Service Commission, a regulatory agency for the state's utilities.
Among the worst affected areas in Florida reporting widespread power outages are Palm Beach County, which includes West Palm Beach and Boca Raton; Sarasota County; and Lee County, which includes Fort Myers and Cape Coral.
This interactive power outage map for Florida published by local news outlet the News Press shows the state and Florida Power and Light were bracing for more than half of its 4.8 million customers to be affected.
Once Matthew is done with Florida, the hurricane is expected to keep traveling north and reportedly has Georgia in its sights next. Georgia Power, the state's largest utility company, said it would be monitoring the storm and had emergency crews on standby, according to a press release Wednesday. An interactive map provided by Georgia Power can keep customers abreast of outages ahead of and during the storm's expected landfall.
Hurricane Matthew has been downgraded to a Category 3 storm from Category 4, but was still bringing winds of up to 120 mph Friday morning and concerns over flash flooding and fatalities after at least one storm-related death was reported in Florida. The storm left a heavy, rising death toll in Haiti, where nearly 500 people died, NBC News reported. Other Caribbean nations affected by Matthew's wrath include Cuba, Jamaica and the Bahamas.