Hurricane Ian is now bearing down on Florida and has become an extremely dangerous Category 4 storm

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Hurricane Ian is now bearing down on Florida and has become an extremely dangerous Category 4 storm as it prepares to slam into the sunshine state's southwestern coast today.

The U.S. National Hurricane Center says Ian has top sustained winds of 220-kilometres per hour and is moving north from its centre 125-kilometres west-southwest of Naples.

The hurricane has prompted warnings of possibly dangerous storm surge and flooding rains along Florida's heavily populated Gulf Coast from Bonita Beach to the Tampa Bay region.

Cuba's 11 million residents remain in the dark after Ian knocked out that country's entire power grid and devastated some of the island's most important tobacco farms.