San Juan, Sep 6 (IANS) The death toll in the Bahamas from hurricane Dorian rose to 23 after three more bodies were found on Grand Bahama and Abacos Island, Health Minister Duane Sands announced.
After delivering the new official tally of storm victims on Thursday, the Minister emphasized that the death toll will rise “much higher” than 23, reports Efe news.
Dorian it hit the Bahamas on September 1 with winds of up to 298km/h — equalling the highest ever recorded at landfall. It battered the Abaco Islands and Grand Bahama, in the north of the archipelago, for two days.
Sands, who did not provide any details about where the three bodies were found, said that specialized personnel will be sent to both islands to embalm the dead at the scene, and refrigerated containers would be provided to preserve the remains, which – he said – are beginning to run out.
He also said that the priority at present was to rescue and provide urgent assistance to the elderly and the sick, who were being transferred to islands in the archipelago that were not devastated by the storm.
Aid to hurricane survivors is coming not only from various governments, including those of the US, the UK and Canada, but also from neighbouring countries, as well as from the tourism sector.
Melanie Roach, with the National Emergency Management Agency, said on Thursday that about 100 people had been rescued on Abaco and that authorities were continuing to clear the roadways on Grand Bahama Island, which are covered with debris.
After devastating the Bahamas, Dorian was now expected to bring a “life-threatening storm surge” up the US east coast.
Residents from Florida all the way up to Virginia were warned to listen to emergency advice as the hurricane slowly moved north.