Hurricane Beryl damages or destroys 90% of homes on one island, leader says
▶ Watch Video: Hurricane Beryl now a Category 5 storm, strongest Atlantic storm recorded this early in season

Hurricane Beryl’s historic rampage across the Caribbean left “immense destruction” when it passed St. Vincent and the Grenadines, the prime minister. On the Caribbean country’s Union Island, 90% of the houses have been “severely damaged or destroyed.”

“Union Island has been devastated,” Prime Minister Ralph Gonsalves said during a press briefing Monday.

“Their roofs … the Union Island airport’s roof is gone. It’s no more.”

The tiny island is just 3 miles long and about a mile wide, with roughly 3,000 residents, according to the island’s information center — a size that can only be considered minuscule compared to the size and strength of Hurricane Beryl.

The storm, which grew from a tropical depression to a major hurricane in less than two days, has been described as an extremely dangerous and rare hurricane by forecasters and experts. It first made landfall as a Category 4 storm on Monday on the Grenada island of Carriacou, which sits just next to Union Island.

Beryl has since strengthened to become the earliest Category 5 hurricane in the Atlantic Basin on record.

Calling the hurricane “dangerous” and “devastating,” Gonsalves said Beryl “left in its wake immense destruction.”

Along with the destruction on Union Island, the island of Bequia also had damage, although not to the same extent. At least one person died, he said, adding that “there may well be more fatalities.”

“There’s still the islandwide blackout,” Gonsalves said. “…There are a few communities which do not have water because of the system having been blocked.”

Storm damage was also reported in Barbados and Carriacou, an island that’s part of Grenada. And Beryl is not yet done wreaking havoc.

“Beryl is still expected to be near major hurricane intensity as it moves into the central Caribbean and passes near Jamaica on Wednesday and the Cayman Islands on Thursday,” the National Hurricane Center said. “…Storm surge could raise water levels by as much as 5 to 8 feet above normal tide levels in areas of onshore winds along the immediate coast of Jamaica.”

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