Photos: Hurricane Irma’s destructive path

Hurricane Irma destroyed many things in its path from the Atlantic to the Gulf

Joseph Dupuis III stacks items off the floor in his parents water logged apartment on the St. John's River in Jacksonville, Fla. in the aftermath of Hurricane Irma, Tuesday, Sept. 12, 2017. (AP Photo/John Raoux)

MIAMI (AP) — Remnants of Irma have spread gusting winds, rains and misery around the South even as Florida begins cleaning up from one of the most destructive hurricanes in its history, a storm so big it smashed across virtually the entire peninsula. Several deaths in the U.S. have been blamed on the storm and authorities have sent an aircraft carrier and other Navy ships to aid search-and-rescue operations amid reports of wide devastation in the hurricane-battered Keys .

IRMA, WHAT’S NEXT?

Recovery operations are ramping up around Florida and beyond, even as the weakened vestiges of Irma dump rains across the South in such states as Georgia, South Carolina, North Carolina, Alabama and Tennessee. The hurricane, once a fearsome Category 5 when it smashed into several Caribbean islands last week, was reduced to remnants with top sustained winds of 25 mph (40 kph) early Tuesday. Meanwhile, heavy equipment crews have begun clearing away road and other debris in Florida as cleanup crews fan out with chain saws to remove downed trees and begin taking stock of the extent of the damage.