One of the most powerful Atlantic hurricanes in recent years is bearing down on Jamaica and Haiti right now and is due to hit eastern Cuba on Tuesday.
CCTV America’s Michael Voss reports.
Hurricane Matthew threatens Jamaica and HaitiOne of the most powerful Atlantic hurricanes in recent years is bearing down on Jamaica and Haiti right now and is due to hit eastern Cuba on Tuesday. CCTV America’s Michael Voss reports.
The streets of Kingston, the capital of Jamaica, were flooded by torrential rains, while the center of Hurricane Matthew was still several hundred kilometers to the south.
With 215 kilometer (133.5 miles) an hour sustained winds, this Category 4 hurricane is now threatening both Jamaica and Haiti with high winds, flash floods and storm surges along the coast.
Haiti is most at risk. The country’s infrastructure has yet to fully recover from the devastating earthquake in 2010, while widespread deforestation leaves it vulnerable to deadly mudslides and floods.
The government has opened enough shelters to house some 350,000 people, but many Haitians tend to ignore warnings and prefer to stay to protect their homes.
The country’s interim president urged residents to follow instructions and evacuate those areas in Matthew’s path.
In Cuba, the capital Havana is not in danger but at the other end of the island the second largest city Santiago and Guantanamo are directly in Hurricane Matthew’s path.
Cuba’s President Raul Castro has spent the past three days touring the region to boost morale and ensure that preparations are complete.
Evacuations are well underway. More than half a million Cubans are moving into shelters and safe accommodation.
The U.S. Naval Base at Guantanamo Bay has also evacuated 700 family members back to the mainland.
Hurricane Matthew is moving slowly forward giving everyone time to prepare, but there is no way to tame its potential destructive power.