Dhe death toll from the hurricane "Fiona" has risen to at least five. One person died in the French overseas territory of Guadeloupe, and two more each in Puerto Rico and the Dominican Republic. The US Hurricane Center (NHC) classified the storm as a Category 3 hurricane on Tuesday evening, with wind speeds of up to 200 kilometers per hour. After severe flooding in parts of the Caribbean, storm "Fiona" as a hurricane of magnitude three also brought heavy rain to the Turks and Caicos Islands. The government of the British Overseas Territory called on the approximately 30,000 residents on Tuesday to stay at home. The hurricane had gained strength and passed the island chain with sustained wind speeds of up to 185 kilometers per hour. The US Hurricane Center predicted "Fiona" will continue to strengthen and likely reach Bermuda on Thursday.
As a category one (of five) hurricane, "Fiona" made landfall in Puerto Rico on Sunday and caused severe damage - Governor Pedro Pierluisi called the extent of the destruction "catastrophic". According to the provider Luma, more than 1.1 million of the approximately 1.5 million connections in Puerto Rico were still without power on Tuesday after an island-wide power blackout. The water supply will also be affected. "Fiona" caused landslides there, blocked roads, uprooted trees and destroyed bridges. Parts of Puerto Rico have still not recovered from the devastating hurricane Maria five years ago, which killed thousands and left countless others homeless. Even then, "Maria" was destroying the island's power grid, and attempts to get the problem under control by privatizing it failed. The US civil protection agency FEMA announced that it would send hundreds of additional employees to Puerto Rico in the coming days.
The deputy governor of the Turks and Caicos Islands said "Fiona" proved to be an "unpredictable storm." There were power outages on the archipelago, and 165 people had to be taken to emergency shelters.
In the Dominican Republic, more than 10,000 people were evacuated to "safe areas" while 400,000 were left without power. Footage released by local media showed residents in the coastal town of Higuey, waist-deep in water trying to save their belongings. President Luis Abinader canceled his planned trip to New York for the UN General Assembly and got an idea of the damage on site. "Fiona" had made landfall near Punta Cana, a Dominican city popular with tourists.