Florida is bracing itself as Hurricane Irma hurtles towards the US state, having left a trail of devastation in its wake over the past few days.

At least 21 people have been killed so far after the Category 5 storm ravaged islands in the Caribbean, flattening buildings and wrecking infrastructure.

The hurricane – one of the most powerful ever recorded in the Atlantic – lost some of its power as it hit Cuba on Friday night (8 September) local time, but is forecast to strengthen as it heads north towards Florida.

Meteorologists said hurricane-force winds may hit Florida Keys and south Florida by Saturday night local time.

Irma's centre is predicted to strike the Florida Keys sometime on Sunday, then hit southwestern Florida, move up the state's Gulf Coast and plow into the Tampa Bay area.

The eye of the storm is expected to miss the Miami metropolitan area of six million people – which for days had been expecting to get hit head-on – but the region will still be pounded with life-threatening hurricane winds, National Hurricane Center spokesman Dennis Feltgen said.

US authorities have ordered 5.6m people – more than a quarter of Florida's population – to evacuate, with tens of thousands having already taken refuge in designated shelters by Saturday morning.

Many of those residents who left their homes will be nervously watching the full force of the storm via live webcams dotted around the state, broadcasting live feeds online of city streets, waterfronts, marinas and beaches.

Some of the webcams have even been connected to separate battery packs in the event power is lost due to infrastructure damage from the storm.

IBTimes UK has provided links to numerous webcam feeds below, covering the Florida Keys, downtown Orlando, Miami, Tampa, West Palm Beach and Clearwater Beach areas.