(News.sky) – An eight-year-old boy has become the first victim of Hurricane Dorian in the Bahamas, where winds of up to 200mph are ripping roofs from homes, overturning cars and tearing down power lines.
The storm has caused devastation over the northern Bahamas, with more than 13,000 homes destroyed or damaged, according to the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies.
Ingrid Mcintosh told Eyewitness News that her grandson Lachino Mcintosh had drowned in the Abaco Islands, in the northern Bahamas. His sister is also understood to be missing.
“My granddaughter called my daughter from Abaco and she said my daughter said her son, my grandson, dead,” she said.
Asked by the reporter if she knew how he had died, she replied: “They said he drowned.”
She said she had just seen him “two days ago”, adding: “He told me he loved me”.
The Abaco Islands have seen storm surges of 18-23ft (5.5-7m). Prime Minister Hubert Minnis said that in some parts, “you cannot tell the difference as to the beginning of the street versus where the ocean begins”.
Residents in the Caribbean islands are being warned of “catastrophic” flooding from the storm, which is later expected to head towards the US where more than a million people have been ordered to evacuate.
Parts of Georgia and South Carolina are being evacuated in preparation, with forecasters warning Florida is also at risk.
Dorian, a category five hurricane, has maximum sustained winds of 185mph and gusts up to 220mph, making it one of the most powerful Atlantic hurricanes ever. The National Hurricane Centre has described the storm as “life-threatening”.