One of the most powerful storms ever recorded in the Atlantic lashes the Caribbean. Irma, a Category 5 hurricane, has killed at least three people.
And destroyed several buildings in Saint Martin. Mandatory evacuations are underway in parts of Florida – which could get hit in the next several days.
CGTN’s Nitza Soledad Perez reports from San Juan.
Puerto Rico’s residents are taking Hurricane Irma seriously. It’s the first Category 5 storm to cross the Atlantic, with maximum sustained winds of almost 300 kilometers per hour.
Giancarlo Colberg lives in Puerto Rico and is concerned:
“Three generations haven’t lived something as big as this. It’s worrisome for a lot of us.”
Giancarlo invited us into his apartment to show us how he’s prepared for what could become a devastating storm for a small island of about 3.5 million residents.
Most businesses and houses were boarded up. A normally busy San Juan, the island’s capital, bustling with tourists, looked abandoned.
While the eye of the hurricane did not pass directly over the U.S. territory island, residents braced for some of the strongest wind gusts as well as flooding.
The storm surge is one of the biggest concerns for authorities.
Some on the island, like Gustavo Betancourt, were taking last minute precautions.
“I’ve been watching the news, and it looks really strong, so we are here to make sure we protect our property and belongings.”
The last time a hurricane caused significant damage to the island was in 1998. Residents of Puerto Rico are nervously waiting for this storm to pass and hopefully as quickly as possible.
Meteorologist advises “If you’re not gone now, get gone now”
Many have their eyes on Hurricane Irma. Meteorologist Paul Williams of AccuWeather is tracking the storm from the U.S. state of Pennsylvania. Here are his helpful tips for those who may be in the path of the storm.