Dorians devastation in Bahamas: 2,500 people are still missing
Bahamas government data shows 1,300 people are listed as missing in the islands 2 weeks after Hurricane Dorian devastated the region, as the archipelago’s northwest region was lashed by rain from another tropical storm Saturday.
The latest: Tropical Storm Humberto dumped 1 to 3 inches of rain, with pockets of 6-inch rain in parts, as it gained strength and moved north-northwest away from the Bahamas, packing winds of 60 mph, the National Hurricane Center said at 11 p.m. ET. Dorian’s death toll remained at 50 but the number of people missing meant it would significantly rise, Bahamian Prime Minister Hubert Minnis said in a national address.
“[T]he center of Humberto should continue to move well offshore of the east coast of Florida during the next day or so and then move away from the U.S. … Humberto is forecast to become a hurricane on Sunday. … Swells generated by Humberto are expected to affect the northwestern Bahamas, and the coast of the U.S. from east-central Florida to North Carolina during the next few days. These swells could cause life-threatening surf and rip current conditions.”
— National Hurricane Center 11 p.m. advisory
United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres visited the Bahamas this weekend to check on the latest humanitarian efforts.
The big picture: Dorian first made landfall in the Bahamas on Sept 1. It stalled for about a day just north of Grand Bahama before being downgraded to a Category 2 as it moved away last Tuesday, leaving the islands “decimated.”
About 5,000 people have been evacuated from the 2 hardest hit islands, Abacos and on Grand Bahama, officials said, but tens of thousands remain in need of aid, the BBC reports.
How the U.S. is helping: The United States Coast Guard has been assisting with recovery operations and conducting medical evacuations, and the U.S. Customs and Border Protection has processed evacuees in Florida.
A White House official said Wednesday that the U.S. would continue to support the Bahamas but “at this time, we do not plan to invoke Temporary Protected Status for those currently in the United States,” Reuters reports.
More than 47 metric tons of USAID supplies were sent to the Bahamas to help an estimated 44,000 people, Green tweeted.
“What I was struck by was the focused nature of the devastation. There are parts of Abaco and the Bahamas that don’t show a great deal of damage, and then there are clusters and communities that were devastated, almost as though nuclear bombs were dropped on them.”
— USAID director Mark Green
Margie Gerthadauphin (bottom) and her daughter Kimberly salvage belongings from what remains of their home in Marsh Harbour, Bahamas. Photo: Andrew Caballero-Reynolds/AFP/Getty Images
A Canadian search and rescue team search the debris in Marsh Harbour. Photo: Andrew Caballero-Reynolds/AFP/Getty Images
People await evacuation by boat at Marsh Harbour, Great Abaco. Photo: Brendan Smialowski/AFP/Getty Images
Dejani Louistan with the only belongings she managed to salvage in the Mudd neighborhood of Marsh Harbour. Photo: Carolyn Van Houten/The Washington Post via Getty Images
Residents work on a roof in the Mudd neighborhood of Marsh Harbour, Great Abaco. Photo: Brendan Smialowski/AFP/Getty Images
The remains of a home on Elbow Key Island. Photo: Jose Jimenez/Getty Images
Eludieu Jnnoel collects rubble and debris from damaged homes in Hope Town, Bahamas. Photo: Jose Jimenez/Getty Images
Residents await evacuation at a dock in Marsh Harbour on Saturday. The U.S. Coast Guard is conducting medical evacuations. Photo: Brendan Smialowski/AFP/Getty Images
Residents of an area destroyed by Hurricane Dorian ask for food and water from rescue volunteers in Marsh Harbour, Abaco Island. Photo: Fernando Llano/AP
The remains of Grand Bahama International Airport in Freeport. CNN reports the walls have gone and “the ceiling has come crashing.” Photo: Yasmin Rigby/AFP/Getty Images
Damage on Great Abaco Island. Officials say 17 of those confirmed dead were from the Abaco islands and 3 from Grand Bahama, The Nassau Guardian reports. Photo: Scott Olson/Getty Images
Abaco properties preliminary reports show some 76,000 Bahamians have been impacted and more than 13,000 houses damaged or destroyed, per the American Red Cross. Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images
U.S. Coast Guard MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter crews deployed to Andros Island to help with medical evacuations capture Dorian’s devastation on Monday. Photo: U.S. Coast Guard/Twitter
Marsh Harbour was hit hard. Photo: Scott Olson/Getty Images
The U.S. Coast Guard has been capturing the devastation on the Bahamas while helping with recovery efforts. Photo: Adam Stanton/US Coast Guard via Getty Images
A flooded downtown street in the Bahamas capital, Nassau. Photo: Lucy Worboys/AFP/Getty Images
First responders escort an injured person from Abaco Island after the U.S. Coast Guard evacuated people from the island on Tuesday. Photo: Jose Jimenez/Getty Images
The damage on Abaco Island. Photo: HeadKnowles Foundation via Getty Images
U.S. Coast Guard Vice Adm. Scott Buschman (L) and Bahamas Prime Minister Hubert Minnis (C) prepare to go on a reconnaissance flight to Abaco Island. Photo: Jose Jimenez/Getty Images
Editor’s note: This article has been updated with more details throughout.