NewsHurricane Beryl wreaks havoc in the Caribbean, heads for Jamaica

Hurricane Beryl wreaks havoc in the Caribbean, heads for Jamaica

Hurricane Beryl is heading towards Jamaica. It has already killed at least 6 people.
Hurricane Beryl is heading towards Jamaica. It has already killed at least 6 people.
Images source: © Agencja Forum | Erika Santelices / Reuters / Forum
Violetta Baran

3 July 2024 08:09

Hurricane Beryl, which reached the highest-fifth category on the Saffir-Simpson scale - ravaged the southeastern Caribbean. At least six people have died as a result. Currently, the storm is heading towards Jamaica.

The National Hurricane Center (NHC) in the United States forecasts that Beryl will lose strength in the coming hours. Nevertheless, the hurricane will still possess enormous force as it passes near or over Jamaica on Wednesday. On Thursday, it is expected to be near the Cayman Islands and then close to the Yucatán Peninsula in Mexico.

Jamaica's Prime Minister, Andrew Holness, urged all citizens on Tuesday to treat the hurricane as a severe threat. "It is, however, not a time to panic," he added.

On Tuesday afternoon, the hurricane was about 200 kilometres southeast of Isla Beata in the Dominican Republic. Winds were blowing at 250 kilometres per hour, and the storm was moving northwest at 35 kilometres per hour.

"We are most concerned about Jamaica, where we are expecting the core of a major hurricane to pass near or over the island," said NHC Director Michael Brennan. A tropical storm warning was also issued for the entire southern coast of Hispaniola, the island belonging to Haiti and the Dominican Republic.

At least 6 people have already died

So far, three people have died in Grenada and the country’s island of Carriacou, and one in Saint Vincent and the Grenadines. Two fatalities were reported in northern Venezuela, and five people were reported missing there. Heavy rainfall affected about 25,000 residents in this area.

"The situation is grim. There is no power, and there is almost complete destruction of homes and buildings on the island. The roads are not passable, and in many instances they are cut off because of the large quantity of debris strewn all over the streets. The possibility that there may be more fatalities remains a grim reality as movement is still highly restricted," said Grenada’s Prime Minister, Dickon Mitchell, on Tuesday after the hurricane passed.

Ralph Gonsalves, Prime Minister of Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, reported that 90 percent of homes on Union Island were destroyed and that "similar levels of devastation" is expected on the islands of Myreau and Canouan.

The last intense hurricane to hit the southeastern Caribbean was Hurricane Ivan 20 years ago, which caused the deaths of dozens of people in Grenada.

Beryl is the second hurricane in the Atlantic this season, from June 1 to 30 November. Earlier this month, Tropical Storm Alberto made landfall in northeastern Mexico and killed four people there.

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