- Title: The Bahamas braces for Hurricane Matthew after devastating blow to Haiti
- Date: 4th October 2016
- Summary: NASSAU, BAHAMAS (OCTOBER 4, 2016) (REUTERS) ****WARNING CONTAINS FLASH PHOTOGRAPHY*** GENERAL VIEW OF BAHAMIAN NATIONAL EMERGENCY MANAGEMENT AGENCY BAHAMIAN FLAG SIGN OUTSIDE NATIONAL EMERGENCY MANAGEMENT AGENCY (NEMA) VARIOUS OF BAHAMIAN PRIME MINISTER, PERRY CHRISTIE, DURING NEWS CONFERENCE MAP OF THE BAHAMAS (SOUNDBITE) (English) BAHAMIAN PRIME MINISTER PERRY CHRISTIE SAYING: "It if for us to advise you that the storm has strengthened and from what we have seen in Haiti and elsewhere is bringing dangerously strong winds and extremely heavy rains. As we know from experience from last year's hurricane, these natural phenomena can be violently unpredictable." VARIOUS POLICE UNITS AND OTHER OFFICIALS PRESENT DURING NEWS CONFERENCE (SOUNDBITE) (English) BAHAMIAN PRIME MINISTER PERRY CHRISTIE SAYING: "One need only to watch television to have a sense of how potentially damaging the storm is to our country and potentially to our people. it is serious and it is potentially catastrophic." VARIOUS OF BOATS AND YACHTS
- Embargoed: 19th October 2016 23:53
- Keywords: Hurricane Matthew Prime Minister Perry Christie Category 4 Bahamas
- Location: NASSAU, BAHAMAS AND INTERNET
- City: NASSAU, BAHAMAS AND INTERNET
- Country: Bahamas
- Topics: Disaster/Accidents,Wind/Hurricane/Typhoons/Tornadoes
- Reuters ID: LVA00152LDTMV
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: The Bahamas braced for Hurricane Matthew on Tuesday (October 04), the fiercest Caribbean storm in almost a decade that battered Haiti's southwest coast with 145 mile-per-hour (230 kph) winds and surging seas that flooded coastal towns, tearing at trees and rooftops before moving on to Cuba and then, eventually, the Bahamas.
Bahamian Prime Minister Perry Christie held a news conference and warned that the storm could create extremely dangerous conditions.
"It if for us to advise you that the storm has strengthened and from what we have seen in Haiti and elsewhere is bringing dangerously strong winds and extremely heavy rains. As we know from experience from last year's hurricane, these natural phenomena can be violently unpredictable," Christie said.
"One need only to watch television to have a sense of how potentially damaging the storm is to our country and potentially to our people. It is serious and it is potentially catastrophic," he added.
Hurricane Matthew dumped torrential rain across the island of Hispaniola that Haiti shares with Dominican Republic, where four people were killed by collapsing walls and mudslides. In Haiti, at least one person was killed.
By late afternoon, the cyclone was pounding the eastern tip of Cuba, the U.S. National Hurricane Centre said. In Cuba's city of Guantanamo, about 100 miles (160 km) from the storm's core, the winds picked up and streets emptied as people moved to shelters or inside their homes.
Matthew is predicted to maintain Category 4 strength through the Bahamas and weaken slightly as it tracks toward Florida later in the week.
With communications out across most of Haiti and a key bridge impassable because of a swollen river, there was no immediate word on the full extent of potential casualties and damage from the storm in the poorest country in the Americas.
Hurricane conditions remained in parts of Haiti and as much as 3 feet (1 meter) of rain was forecast to fall over hills that are largely deforested and prone to flash floods and mudslides, threatening villages as well as shantytowns in the capital Port-au-Prince.
The storm is expected to hit the tourist town of Baracoa in the province of Guantanamo, passing close to the disputed U.S. Naval base and military prison and also to a small Cuban city of the same name.
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