Tropical storm Hermine hit the Florida Gulf Coast early this morning as a category one hurricane, bringing with it a heavy storm surge, BBC News reports.
The Foreign & Commonwealth Office says tourists should "monitor the progress of approaching storms and follow the instructions issued by the local authorities, including any evacuation orders.”
Governor Rick Scott declared a state of emergency for 51 counties as residents were braced for the dangerous storm, describing it as a “life threatening situation”.
Wind gusts reached 80mph but two hours after hitting the coast Hermine was downgraded to a tropical storm.
Police in Taylor County said the storm had inflicted "severe damage".
City officials in the state capital Tallahassee said at least 70,000 homes were now without power.
The town of Cedar Key saw a 6.6ft storm surge, raising high tide to almost 10ft and causing significant flooding.
A total of 8,000 members of the Florida National Guard were prepared to be deployed after the storm.