Saturday, 21 October, 2017

Toppled trees, lashings of rain as Hurricane Maria batters Puerto Rico

Hurricane Maria path map NOAA NHCHurricane Maria is causing deteriorating conditions over eastern Dominican Republic
Arthur Frazier | 21 September, 2017, 00:43

The Category 5 storm was 30 miles southeast of the island as of 23:00 EST Tuesday night, according to the National Hurricane Center.

One of the strongest hurricanes to ever hit Puerto Rico pummeled the island Wednesday with sustained 150 miles per hour winds as officials warned it would decimate the power company's crumbling infrastructure and force the government to rebuild dozens of communities.

Hurricane Maria became the strongest storm to make landfall in Puerto Rico in 85 years when it barreled ashore Wednesday morning as a Category 4.

"Maria is likely to affect Puerto Rico as an extremely unsafe major hurricane", the National Hurricane Center stated Monday.

The US National Hurricane Center warned of a "potentially catastrophic" impact as Maria churned northwest towards the Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico on Tuesday - with Puerto Rico's Governor Ricardo Rossello describing it as "the worst storm of the last century".

The storm's eye had passed over St. Croix in the Virgin Islands overnight, bringing hours of hurricane force winds.

People take shelter at Roberto Clemente Coliseum in San Juan, Puerto Rico, during the passage of the Hurricane Maria.

Afghan Taliban will support Pakistan if India, US attacks, says Maulana Sami
USA officials have urged the neighboring Pakistani government to crack down on Haqqani militants operating in Pakistan. Another Taliban member, whose name was not mentioned in the report either, said Mohib was part of the Afghan Taliban.

Communications and local radar data were interrupted and more than 10,000 people were hunkered down in shelters by Wednesday's arrival.

Your First Alert Weather Team continues to monitor Hurricanes Jose and Maria in the Atlantic Ocean.

"The rivers come out and flood everything", she said. Many on the island are still without water.

"We're in hurricane alley, so we've had other storms, but nothing like this", Jones said, referring to Irma, which was one of the most powerful Atlantic hurricanes ever recorded and which killed more than 80 people on Caribbean islands and the U.S. mainland. That kind of wind can destroy homes, uproot trees, and knock out power for months.

Puerto Rico Gov. Ricardo Rossello said the U.S. territory would "have to rebuild".

Dailey noted that her house on the island lost its roof, as did the official residence of the prime minister, Roosevelt Skeritt.

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