Monster storm Dorian got here to a near stand-nonetheless over the Bahamas Monday, prolonging the suffering as surging seawaters and hurricane winds made a disorder of low-lying island communities and pushed mass evacuations alongside the US east coast.
Bahamas Prime Minister Hubert Minnis mentioned reported “devastation is unprecedented” within the Abaco Islands, which on Sunday obtained the total brunt of Dorian as it got here ashore as the most powerful storm ever to hit the archipelago.
The storm’s toll was nonetheless untallied practically 24 hours after it made landfall as a Category 5 with sustained winds of 290 kph (185 mph).
It weakened Monday barely to a nonetheless-devastating Category 4 storm, punishing Grand Bahama Island with “catastrophic winds and storm surge,” the Miami-based National Hurricane Center mentioned in its 1500 GMT bulletin.
It was grinding its method westward Monday at a velocity of 1 mile per hour (2 kph), laying siege for hours to Grand Bahama Island, with sustained winds of 250 kph (155 mph).
Fear gripped residents of Freeport, as winds tore off shutters and water started coming into houses, stated Yasmin Rigby, reached by text within the Grand Bahama island’s principal city.
Initial Red Cross estimates have been that 13,000 buildings might have been damaged or destroyed by Dorian, officers in Geneva stated.
The Miami-based National Hurricane Center forecast an 18 to 23-foot storm surge above tide ranges in components of Grand Bahama, accompanied by large and destructive waves.
Water ranges in the Abacos, swamped by an identical surge Sunday, were expected to subside slowly.