Hurricane Dorian destruction can be seen in videos posted online after the Category 5 hurricane slammed into the Bahamas with 185 winds.
Twitter user @mvp242 posted several videos showing the extent of flooding and wind damage as the storm tore threw Great Abaco Island on Sunday with reported 220 mph gusts. The storm continues to thrash Grand Bahama Island today still as a Category 5 hurricane.
In one video, a woman pleas for help after the storm tore off the roof of her apartment complex, saying ““please pray for us. Pray for Abaco, I’m begging you.”
ABC News posted video showing damage in Hope Town in Elbow Cay.
The monster storm, tied for the strongest Atlantic hurricane landfall on record with the 1935 Labor Day hurricane, ripped off roofs, overturned cars and tore down power lines in the Bahamas as hundreds hunkered in schools, churches and other shelters in the Bahamas.
There was little information from the affected islands, though officials expected many residents to be left homeless. Most people went to shelters as the storm approached, with tourist hotels shutting down and residents boarded up their homes.
“It’s devastating,” Joy Jibrilu, director general of the Bahamas’ Ministry of Tourism and Aviation, said Sunday afternoon. “There has been huge damage to property and infrastructure.”
Video that Jibrilu and government spokesman Kevin Harris said was sent by Abaco residents showed homes missing parts of roofs, electric lines on the ground and smashed and overturned cars. One showed floodwaters rushing through the streets of an unidentified town at nearly the height of a car roof.
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. According to the Nassau Guardian, he called it “probably the most sad and worst day of my life to address the Bahamian people.”
Bahamas radio station ZNS Bahamas reported that a mother and child on Grand Bahama had called to say they were sheltering in a closet and seeking help from police.
Silbert Mills, owner of the Bahamas Christian Network, said trees and power lines were torn down in Abaco.
“The winds are howling like we’ve never, ever experienced before,” said Mills, who was riding out the hurricane with his family in the concrete home he built 41 years ago on central Abaco.
Jack Pittard, a 76-year-old American who has visited the Bahamas for 40 years, also decided to stay put on Abaco for Dorian, which he said was his first hurricane. A short video from Pittard about 2:30 p.m. Sunday showed the wind shaking his home and ripping off the siding.
The Bahamas archipelago is no stranger to hurricanes. Homes are required to have metal reinforcements for roof beams to withstand winds into the upper limits of a Category 4 hurricane, and compliance is generally tight for those who can afford it. Risks are higher in poorer neighborhoods, with wooden homes in low-lying areas.
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