Hurricane Dorian: The destruction of the Abaco Islands



The official death toll stood at seven but was certain to rise.

Hurricane Dorian, weakened but still potent, advanced up the southeastern US coastline Wednesday, threatening shoreline communities with risky storm surges and the possibility it still might make landfall in the U.S.As the Bahamas began to assess the devastation Dorian wreaked on the normally idyllic vacation mecca, USA hurricane forecasters said the storm, still packing 165 kilometer-an-hour winds, was positioned off the northeastern coast of Florida and tracking close to the USA mainland.

"Right now there are just a lot of unknowns", the parliament member Iram Lewis said.

Hurricane Dorian's centre is moving parallel to Florida's northeastern coast as it churns north-north-westward in the Atlantic.

Stores and restaurants were boarded up with wood and corrugated metal in Charleston's historic downtown, and about 830,000 people were under mandatory evacuation orders on the SC coast.

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. The U.S. Coast Guard said four of its helicopters were assisting in humanitarian efforts.

The Bahamian government sent hundreds of police officers and marines into the stricken islands, along with doctors, nurses and other health care workers. "In Grand Bahama, today will tell the magnitude of the problem".

"It is neither freakish nor unintelligent", she said. "I'm just thankful I'm alive".

Ms Williamson, who announced her bid for Democratic nomination in January this year, later deleted the original tweet and replaced it with one that read: "Prayers for the people of the Bahamas, Florida, Georgia and the Carolinas. Not one of them have a home to live anymore".

With telephones down on Abaco and Grand Bahama islands, residents posted lists of missing loved ones across social media sites. Almost half the homes were feared severely damaged or destroyed, the Red Cross said Tuesday. Forecasters said it had maximum sustained winds of 110 mph (175 kph) and was centered about 130 miles (210 kilometers) south of Charleston. The winds and heavy surf is likely to hit the Georgia, South Carolina and North Carolina coasts by late on Thursday.


Dorian's wind speeds have dropped to make it a Category 2 storm, but forecasters warn it's still risky. "Dorian is expected to remain a powerful hurricane during the next couple of days", the NHC said.

"We are ready to go", Gaynor said.

The Navy ordered ships at its huge base in Norfolk, Virginia, to head out to sea for safety, and warplanes at Langley Air Force Base in Hampton, Virginia, were being moved inland.

The State Department said it did not believe any USA citizens who were in the Bahamas during the storm were killed. Dorian forced Disney Cruise Line to cancel one trip and delay the return of another ship to Port Canaveral, Florida.

On Tybee Island, Georgia, Debbie and Tony Pagan stacked their beds and couches atop other furniture and covered their doors with plastic wrap and sandbags before evacuating the place.

It comes as rescue crews fanned out across a blasted landscape of smashed and flooded homes on Wednesday, trying to reach drenched and stunned victims of Hurricane Dorian and take the full measure of the disaster.

"It's a awful way to live", Debbie Pagan said. Even if the hurricane doesn't end up hitting the state directly, he said, "there's still going to be wind and water and if you're in the coastal area, that water can be treacherous". "How would you like to be living on pins and needles?"

A volunteer looks for the owner of a dog he rescued from the rising waters of Hurricane Dorian, on a flooded road near the Causarina bridge in Freeport, Grand Bahama, Bahamas.

Mark Russell, an Army veteran who has lived in SC much of his life, went to a hurricane shelter right away.

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