Aerials show trail of destruction left by Hurricane Ian in Florida.

Rescue workers and residents of Florida's Gulf Coast searched for missing people and picked up the pieces from wrecked homes on Thursday (September 29) after Hurricane Ian tore through the area with howling winds, torrential rains and raging surf.

One of the mightiest storms to hit the U.S. mainland in recent years, Ian flooded communities and left more than two million homes and businesses without power before barreling on across the peninsula to the Atlantic seaboard.

It was downgraded to a tropical storm on Thursday morning as it weakened over land.

Aerial footage from Lee County on Thursday morning showed flooded neighborhoods, homes on fire, damaged highways and boats washed ashore by the hurricane.

Ian blasted ashore at the barrier island of Cayo Costa on Wednesday afternoon as a Category 4 hurricane with maximum sustained winds of 150 miles per hour (241 kph).

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