Hurricane Katrina continues to leave a path of destruction as it moves inland from the battered U.S. gulf coast where it made landfall early on Monday. The fire chief for the city of Gulfport, Mississippi, says he saw "complete devastation" when he ventured out to assess the damage. A storm surge of water more than six meters high has washed over the nearby coastline slamming boats into buildings and causing widespread damage. When the storm approached land, it veered slightly eastward, sparing New Orleans the widespread catastrophic flooding that had been feared. But early damage reports say the Louisiana city still suffered extensive damage, with houses in some neighborhoods underwater to their rooflines. Glass windows were blown out of many downtown buildings, and the wind ripped holes in the roof of the Superdome, the sports arena that sheltered thousands who were unable to evacuate before the storm hit. As the storm continues to move over land, Katrina has been down graded to a category one hurricane with winds of about 153 kilometers per hour. Authorities are still warning people in the storm's path to be on alert for high winds, flooding and tornadoes.