Catastrophic Maria hits Dominica
Sept 19, Dominica: The Hurricane Maria, has strengthened to "potentially catastrophic" category five storm, and has torn into the Caribbean island of Dominica with sustained winds of 260km/h (160mph).
According to a post by Prime Minister Roosevelt Skerrit, on Facebook his roof has been torn off and he is "at the complete mercy of the hurricane".He said his house had flooded, later adding that he had been rescued.
Maria is moving roughly along the same track as Irma, the hurricane that devastated the region this month.
The nearby island of Martinique has declared a maximum-level alert while another French island, Guadeloupe, ordered evacuations.
Hurricane warnings are also in place for:
Puerto Rico: The US territory expects Maria to make landfall as a category three on Tuesday. It escaped the worst of Irma and has been an important hub for getting relief to islands more badly affected. Governor Ricardo Rossello urged islanders to seek refuge.
US Virgin Islands and British Virgin Islands: Both island chains suffered severe damage from Irma and President Donald Trump declared a state of emergency for the US territories on Monday. British authorities fear debris left behind by Irma could be whipped up by the new storm and pose an extra threat.Warnings are also in effect for St Kitts and Nevis, Montserrat and St Lucia while hurricane watches are in place for St Martin, Saba, St Eustatius and Anguilla.
The Oslo Times International News Network