TAMPA, Fla. -- Tropical Storm Debby drenched Florida with heavy rains, flooded low-lying neighborhoods and knocked out power to thousands of homes and businesses as it lingered off the state's coast Monday.

The governor declared a statewide emergency, and a tropical storm warning was in effect for most of Florida's Gulf coast. At least one person was killed by a twister in Florida, and crews in Alabama searched for a man who disappeared in rough surf Sunday.

In St. Pete Beach on Florida's Gulf Coast, a tornado ripped the roof off a marina and an apartment complex and felled fences, trees and signs.

Kourosh Bakhtiarian's yard was flooded. He said people were driving around to survey the area, and he was upset police hadn't closed off the neighborhood streets: "We have a lot of visitors from outside of this area. They just want to see exactly where the disaster is. I mean, this is not the happiest time."

State officials estimated at least 35,000 homes and businesses were without power.

The storm closed the sole bridge to St. George Island, a popular vacation island in Florida. Power was already out on the island, and authorities said it could be for days.

Residents in several counties near the crook of Florida's elbow were urged to leave low-lying neighborhoods because of the threat of flooding. Shelters were opened in some areas.

The Highlands County Sheriff's Office said tornadoes moved through the area southeast of Tampa, damaging homes.

Sheriff's office spokeswoman Nell Hays said a woman was found dead in a house in Venus that was destroyed in the storm. A child found in the same house was taken to the hospital. -- AP

Trump criminal trial begins … Hill Ranch sex abuse settlement … Li teachers honored Credit: Newsday

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