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Turks and Caicos under shelter-in-place order as Hurricane Fiona slams islands after leaving 5 dead across the Caribbean

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The center said that meteorologists had warned of “life-threatening floods” as heavy rains continued on parts of Britain, home to about 38,000 people.

“Fiona has definitely hit us over the past few hours, and we’re not out of her weight yet,” Akira Misik, Minister of Urban Planning and Infrastructure Development, said at the briefing. The islands of Grand Turk, South Caicos, Salt Cay, North Caicos and Central Caicos were experiencing island-wide power outages Tuesday night, Williams said, adding that restoration efforts will begin as soon as it is safe.

The center said the storm would slowly move away from the islands on Tuesday and Wednesday night and begin approaching Bermuda Thursday, when up to 3 inches of rain is expected and create “life-threatening waves that rupture existing conditions.” The Tropical Storm Watch is issued by Bermuda Weather Service.

The hurricane center said the storm surge from the storm would spread westward over the next day or two across the southwest Atlantic, toward the northwest of the Bahamas and the east coast of the United States.

Dominican Republic and Puerto Rico deal with deadly consequences

The Dominican Republic is still grappling with the devastated path of Fiona — where the storm’s outer bands are still causing flooding after it traversed the Caribbean nation on Monday — and Puerto Rico, which Fiona crossed the day before, causing almost power outages and leaving unseen damage. There since Hurricane Maria made landfall five years ago on Tuesday, officials said.

At least two people have died in the severe weather in the Dominican Republic, according to Major General Juan Manuel Méndez Garcia, director of the country’s emergency operations center. Director Orelis Esther Jimenez, 18, said she was traveling by motorbike when she was struck by a power pole that had fallen due to strong winds. She was taken to the hospital, where she was later pronounced dead.

On Monday, officials there also confirmed the death of a man in Nagoa, in the northeastern Dominican Republic, after being struck by strong winds in a tree. One death was also reported in the French province of Guadeloupe, which was hit by Fiona late last week, and two in Puerto Rico.

In Puerto Rico, 58-year-old Gilberto Ayala Aponte swept a swollen river behind his home in Comerio. Another man, 70, Jose Cruz Roman, died in a fire that occurred when he was trying to put gasoline into his generator while it was running, officials said.

Parts of Puerto Rico will see rainfall totals of more than 30 inches, as Fiona has pushed rivers to flood and rising waters to gather in parts of the territory, inundating homes, streets and fields. One of the videos showed flowing water decimating a bridge and carrying its structure downstream. CNN staff said mudslides blocked some roads from coastal areas inland.
FEMA Administrator Dean Cresswell traveled to the island on Tuesday to assess the damage and the agency announced that it would deploy several teams to bolster response efforts on the ground.

Puerto Rico Governor Pedro Pierluisi said on Tuesday that the damage is catastrophic in the territory’s center and its southern and southeastern regions.

The governor said a large portion of the population should have electricity by late Wednesday, but the greater damage in the southern part of the island means it will take longer to restore there.

More than 1.16 million of the island’s 1.47 million utility customers were still without power as of Tuesday night, according to a PowerOutage.us estimate, which indicates that updated information about restoration efforts is limited.

More than 2,000 people are working to restore energy, Mario Hurtado, LUMA Energy’s regulatory director, told a CNN reporter on Tuesday. LUMA operates the power grid in Puerto Rico.

On the same day, New York’s attorney general called on federal authorities to investigate the power provider, saying residents were still experiencing frequent outages and high electrical rates five years after Hurricanes Irma and Maria and “after spending billions of federal dollars to upgrade and strengthen the island’s electrical grid.” .

Fiona expected to continue promoting

Fiona intensified into a Category 3 storm as it moved away from the northern coast of the Dominican Republic early Tuesday.
This is the first major hurricane – Category 3 or higher – of the Atlantic hurricane season this year.
Where does Fiona go from here is where she gets stronger
The hurricane center said Tuesday night that the Turks and Caicos Islands could see a total of 5 to 10 inches of rain from Fiona as well as storm surge — ocean water pushed into land — as much as 3 feet above normal tide levels.

Hurricane conditions persisted in Turks and Caicos Tuesday night, and tropical storms — winds of at least 39 mph — are expected over parts of the southeastern Bahamas over the next few hours, the Hurricane Center said.

Further strengthening is expected as Fiona switches from Turks and Caicos Islands. It may be a Category 4 storm — with sustained winds of 130 to 156 mph — late Wednesday over the Atlantic. Meteorologists say it could still be in Category 4 when it passes through Bermuda.

Over the weekend, Fiona could make landfall in eastern Canada as a hurricane. It’s too early to know exactly where or how strong it is.

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Fiona leaves behind a devastated Puerto Rico

Tuesday marks five years since the disastrous Hurricane Maria hit Puerto Rico, and some who lived through the 2017 crisis say flooding in Fiona could be even more severe.

Juan Miguel Gonzalez, a Puerto Rican business owner, told CNN that his neighborhood had not yet finished recovering from Maria when she hit Fiona. But this time, he says, the floods caused more damage to their homes.

“A lot of people – more than (through) Maria – have lost their homes now … have lost everything in their homes to the floods,” Gonzalez told CNN on Monday. “Maria’s wind was stormy. But this wind, with all the rain, destroyed everything in the house.”

Getsabel Osorio stands in her home that was destroyed by Hurricane Maria five years ago before Fiona arrived in Luisa, Puerto Rico.

Officials said water service was also disrupted for most people, because river flooding affected filtration operations and must subside before safe treatment can resume. The province’s Canal and Sewerage Authority said about 60% of customers on the island had no running water on Tuesday morning.

Pierluisi said more than 1,200 people were staying in about 70 shelters on the island on Tuesday. Major General Jose Reyes, an assistant general in the Puerto Rican National Guard, said emergency crews were battling relentless rain to save nearly 1,000 lives as of midday Monday.

On Tuesday, the governor said school buildings will be checked to make sure it is safe for students to return to class in the coming days.

National Guard forces direct traffic as Resident Luis Nogueira helps clear a road damaged by Hurricane Fiona in Cayai, Puerto Rico, on Tuesday.
In addition to hundreds of Puerto Rican National Guard personnel helping with rescue and recovery efforts, the White House said Monday that President Joe Biden told Pierluisi during a phone call that federal support would increase in the coming days.

“With damage assessments in place, the president said the number of support personnel will increase significantly,” the White House said.

New York Governor Cathy Hochhol also announced that the state will send 100 state troops to assist relief efforts in Puerto Rico. She also said that teams from the New York Energy Authority are available to help restore energy.

More than a million customers left without water service in the Dominican Republic

In the Dominican Republic, where up to 20 inches of rain fell in some places, emergency workers brought nearly 800 people to safety, said Juan Manuel Méndez, director of emergency management operations for the Dominican Republic. He said at least 519 people took refuge in the country’s 29 shelters on Monday.

As of Monday afternoon, at least 1018,564 customers across the Dominican Republic had no access to running water as 59 aqueducts were out of service and many others were only partially operating, according to Jose Luis Germain Mejia. National Emergency Management Officer.

Emergency management officials said some in the Dominican Republic were also out of power on Monday with 10 circuits out. It is unclear how many people were affected by the outage.

Correction: This story has been updated with the correct age of the second victim in Puerto Rico, following updated information from officials.

CNN’s Leila Santiago, Nikki Carvajal, Robert Shackleford, Artemis Moustachian, Taylor Ward, Holly Yan, Christina Maxuris and Jamil Lynch contributed to this report.

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