Bahamas in recovery mode as Hurricane Dorian heads for Florida, Carolinas

05 Septembre, 2019, 03:27 | Auteur: Therese Cote
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Even as people were brought into Nassau, the capital of the Bahamas, it was unclear where they would go.

He also said he expected the death toll to rise. The UN says nearly all will need food aid and clean water.

"We can expect more deaths to be recorded. This is just preliminary information", he said.

"Apocalyptic", said Lia Head-Rigby, who helps run a hurricane relief group and flew over Abaco.

"Once the wind speeds reach up to 40mph, we can no longer come in to get you", McMaster said, according to the SC news channel WBTW News 13. "You can feel the power of the storm when you stare into its eye from above".

Aerial video of the Bahamas' Great Abaco Island showed miles of flooded neighbourhoods, pulverized buildings, upturned boats and shipping containers scattered like toys.

Many buildings had walls or roofs partly ripped off.

A Reuters photographer surveying the damage on Grand Bahama island said many hangars at Freeport airport and several aircraft appeared to be severely damaged.

A single Facebook post by media outlet Our News Bahamas seeking the names of missing people had 1,600 comments listing lost family members since it went live on Tuesday.

Ottawa doctors Denis Dudley and Sharyn Laughlin were contacted Wednesday after three days without communicating with their family, daughter Kristin Dudley told CTV News Ottawa.

"We've never had hurricanes in none of our islands that have experienced the ocean rising like it did".

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Red Cross spokesman Matthew Cochrane said Tuesday that more than 13,000 houses, or about 45% of the homes on Grand Bahama and Abaco, were believed to be severely damaged or destroyed.

Abaco and Grand Bahama islands, with a combined population of about 70,000, are two of the largest islands in the country.

The U.S. Coast Guard, Britain's Royal Navy and relief organizations including the United Nations and the Red Cross joined the burgeoning effort to rush food and medicine to survivors and lift the most desperate people to safety by helicopter.

Dorian, meanwhile, pushed its way northward off the Florida shoreline with reduced but still-dangerous 105 miles per hour (165 kph) winds on a projected course that could sideswipe Georgia and the Carolinas.

The storm, which ravaged the Bahamas with more than a full day of devastating wind and rain, had weakened substantially - from a Category 5 storm to a Category 2 - but still had dangerously high winds and threatened to swamp low-lying regions from Georgia to southeastern Virginia on its trek northward.

But it could strengthen again to a Category 4 in the next 24 hours "because it is hovering over warm waters, a key ingredient in hurricane intensity, NHC meteorologist Lance Wood said". Then, the agency predicted, the storm "is forecast to move near or over the coast of SC and North Carolina Thursday through Friday".

Chris Creel, manager of Piggly Wiggly, stocks pallets of bottled water as grocery customers prepare for the arrival of storm weather with Hurricane Dorian in New Bern, North Carolina.

As forecasters warned on Wednesday of near-record water levels swamping North and SC, millions of people were under evacuation orders while Hurricane Dorian crept up the south-eastern U.S. coast.

"Once the rain comes and the wind hits, it's going to blow left, right, in and out, and there's not really a place that you can find" to avoid it, said Russell, 63.

"We certainly got lucky in Florida, and now if we could get lucky in Georgia, in North Carolina, in South Carolina", President Donald Trump told reporters in the Oval Office.

Many Florida residents were relieved on Wednesday as their state was spared the worst of Dorian's wrath.

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