Baku, September 2, AZERTAC
Hurricane Dorian, with nearly unprecedented strength, struck the northern Bahamas as a catastrophic Category 5 storm Sunday, as hundreds hunkered down in schools, churches and shelters, according to Fox News.
Dorian slammed into Elbow Cay in the Abaco Islands at 12:40 p.m., and then made a second landfall near Marsh Harbour on Great Abaco Island at 2 p.m., after officials made last-minute pleas for those in low-lying areas to evacuate. The 185 mph winds have made it the second-strongest storm in the Atlantic Ocean since 1950.
Homes are missing parts of their roofs. Power lines have been downed. Cars have been smashed and overturned. Floodwaters are rushing through the streets of an unidentified town at nearly the height of a car roof. This is just the beginning of the storm damage in the Bahamas.
“Catastrophic conditions” were reported in the Abaco Islands, with a storm surge of 18-23 feet, and Dorian was expected to cross Grand Bahama later in the day “with all its fury,” hurricane officials said.
The hurricane was moving to the west at 5 mph.
In some parts of Abaco, “you cannot tell the difference as to the beginning of the street versus where the ocean begins,” Prime Minister Hubert Minnis said.
He called it “probably the most sad and worst day of my life to address the Bahamian people,” as the Nassau Guardian reported.
Earlier, Minnis had warned that anyone who did not evacuate was “in extreme danger and can expect a catastrophic consequence.”
The government opened 14 shelters across the Bahamas. Dozens ignored evacuation orders, officials said.
Dorian could affect as many as 73,000 residents and 21,000 homes.
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