Georgia Gov. Nathan Deal expands state of emergency to include all 159 state counties

Hurricane Irma causes flooding as it batters Florida on September 10, 2017.

ATLANTA — Georgia Gov. Nathan Deal has expanded a state of emergency to include all 159 Georgia counties, Deal’s office said.

The decision was made in advance of heavy rains, strong winds and potential flooding from Hurricane Irma. The state government will be closed Monday and Tuesday except for essential personnel.

Irma bludgeoned Florida on Sunday, snapping trees like matchsticks and knocking out power to more than 1 million people.

Hurling 130 mph winds, the Category 4 storm made landfall on Cudjoe Key, the National Hurricane Center said. But even more powerful could be the storm surges that threaten to swallow Florida’s coastal cities.

“There is imminent danger of life-threatening storm surge flooding along much of the Florida west coast, including the Florida Keys, where a storm surge warning is in effect,” the hurricane center said.

“The threat of catastrophic storm surge flooding is highest along the southwest coast of Florida, where 10 to 15 feet of inundation above ground level is expected. This is a life-threatening situation.”