Newstalk
Newstalk

18.50 21 Sep 2017


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At least 15 people have died and 20 are missing on Dominica following Hurricane Maria, the island's Prime Minister has said.

It was a miracle the death toll was not in the hundreds, Roosevelt Skerrit added.

The PM shed some tears as he spoke to a reporter on the nearby island of Antigua.

He says Dominica "is going to need all the help the world has to offer."

Hundreds of homes were destroyed when the category five storm hit Dominica late on Monday night.

The island's communications systems were cut off and its airport forced to close.

The hospital's generators had to be set aside because of flooding and have yet to be turned back on.

Puerto Rico

Residents in Puerto Rico, meanwhile, are picking up the pieces after their homes were pummelled by Hurricane Maria.

A curfew was imposed across the island after 155mph winds ripped off roofs and brought down balconies and power lines - plunging the entire US territory of 3.5 million people into darkness.

Residents are being urged to seek higher ground with the potential for flash flooding in the aftermath of the storm. 

Governor Ricardo Rossello said the hurricane was "the most devastating storm in a century" adding that it could take months to restore power to the island.


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