Published On: Fri, Sep 6th, 2019

Hurricane Dorian in pictures: Bahamas before and after – The devastating extent of damage | World | News

Hurricane Dorian slammed the Bahamas last weekend, making an excruciatingly slow grind over the Abaco Islands and Grand Bahama, before glancing the US coast where it remains a threat. Across the Bahamas, residents are reeling, with authorities warning the death toll will be “staggering”. The official death toll stands at 30, but is expected to climb as relief efforts manage to get to the worst-hit areas.

Officials are sending morticians and 200 body bags to the Abaco Islands, the worst-hit part of the archipelago.

Hundreds, possibly thousands, are still missing in the Abacos and Grand Bahama.

On Thursday Health Minister Duane Sands warned of a “staggering” final count.

He said: “The public needs to prepare for unimaginable information about the death toll and the human suffering.”

READ MORE: How to help the Bahamas recover from Dorian

Dorian hit the Bahamas as a Category 5 hurricane with winds reaching 185mph, matching the highest ever recorded at landfall, and stalled over affected areas for two days.

The storm is now battering the coasts of South and North Carolina in the US, but is weakening.

The International Red Cross fears 45 percent of homes on Grand Bahama and the Abacos – about 13,000 properties – were severely damaged or destroyed.

Parts of the Bahamas received up to 35in (89cm) of rain, leaving vast areas of it flooded.

The Island of Great Abaco is virtually uninhabitable.

Local media is reporting bodies piled up, no water, power or food, and militias formed to prevent looting.

Aerial images show endless destruction, with roofs torn off, bedrid scattered, cars and boats overturned and some parts entirely underwater.

Efforts to deliver aid are being ramped up now the main storm threat has passed.

Planes and helicopters have been flying in emergency supplies to help the estimated 76,000 people in need of food and shelter.

Eight tonnes (8,000kg) of ready-to-eat meals, storage units, generators and other emergency suppliers are to be flown in from Panama, the UN World Food Programme said.

A $5.4m (£4.3m) budget has been allocated to the UN agency for a three-month emergency operation in the Bahamas.

Dorian remains a hurricane, but has weakened to a Category 2.

The hurricane is slowly churning north-east along the eastern US seaboard, where it still poses a threat.

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