Hurricane Matthew Kills Almost 900 in Haiti Before Striking US

Matthew is the strongest hurricane in the Caribbean since Felix struck in 2007.

2 min read

A woman searches amid the rubble of her home destroyed by Hurricane Matthew in Baracoa, Cuba. (Photo: AP)

The death toll after Hurricane Matthew slammed into the Bahamas early on Thursday soared to 877. Tens of thousands were rendered homeless and the deadly cholera outbreak has claimed at least seven lives till now. Remote areas have also been cut off after the storm.

It is the fiercest hurricane in the Caribbean since Felix in 2007 and has now barrelled towards the southeast US coast, where a mass exodus was under way in four states.

Roadways in Florida, Georgia, and North and South Carolina were packed from late on Wednesday, with millions heeding warnings to flee inland as Hurricane Matthew approached, packing sustained winds of about 220 km per hour, storm surges and heavy rain.

On Friday morning, US President Barack Obama had declared a state of emergency in Georgia and Florida. He also urged the residents to evacuate their homes.

People in Haiti pick up after Hurricane Matthew. (Photo: AP)
People in Haiti pick up after Hurricane Matthew. (Photo: AP)

Seven people died of cholera in the town of Anse-d'Hainault likely because of flood water mixing with sewage. Another 17 cholera cases were reported in Chardonnieres on the south coast.

"Due to massive flooding and its impact on water and sanitation infrastructure, cholera cases are expected to surge after Hurricane Matthew and through the normal rainy season until the start of 2017," the Pan American Health Organisation (PAHO) said in a statement.

Historic town of Baracoa in Cuba destroyed by Hurricane Matthew. (Photo: AP)
Historic town of Baracoa in Cuba destroyed by Hurricane Matthew. (Photo: AP)

On Wednesday, the hurricane devastated the historic colonial town of Baracoa in eastern Cuba and hurled large rocks onto the roads, cutting off a total of four towns, authorities and residents said today.

Residents said it left a trail of destruction in Baracoa, the first Spanish settlement in Cuba.

From space however, Hurricane Matthew looks serene.

As the orbital complex of International Space Station flew 250 miles above the earth, cameras captured a breath-taking view of the hurricane shrouding the Earth.

Watch the video below.

(With inputs from Reuters.)

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