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Hurricane Jose and Hurricane Maria

Hurricane Jose and Hurricane Maria

The U.S. National Hurricane Center says Maria is projected to become a major hurricane as it moves across the Leeward islands toward Puerto Rico, the Dominican Republic and Haiti.

Just north of Dominica, officials in Guadeloupe said the French Caribbean island of would experience extremely heavy flooding starting Monday afternoon, and they warned that many communities would be submerged overnight. "My focus now is in rescuing the trapped and securing medical assistance for the injured", he said.

"The winds have swept away the roofs of nearly every person I have spoken to or otherwise made contact with", Skerrit said.

A half hour later, he said: "My roof is gone".

Martin, however, said the storm is now expected to recurve and remain off the coast before heading back into the Atlantic Ocean.

As feared, Hurricane Maria rapidly strengthened Monday morning as it took aim at Puerto Rico and islands left in ruins by Hurricane Irma.

"Rapid strengthening is forecast during the next 48 hours, and Maria is expected to become a major hurricane as it moves through the Leeward Islands". Puerto Rico Governor Ricardo Rosselló declared a state of emergency to help the island prepare and speed the flow of disaster aid.

Dubbed Hurricane Maria, the storm formed on 16 September and is now a category 2 hurricane.

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The storm was on a path that would take it near numerous islands already wrecked by Hurricane Irma and then on toward Puerto Rico, the Dominican Republic and Haiti.

Hurricane watches and warnings were in effect for a string of islands reaching from Dominica to the US and British Virgin Islands.

A second hurricane, Jose, is also active in the Atlantic and has triggered tropical storm warnings for the northeastern United States. A curfew will be imposed starting at 10 a.m. local time on Tuesday, he said. On St. Martin, residents are wondering if it's even possible to rebuild.

A series of Facebook posts by Dominica Prime Minister Roosevelt Skerrit captured the fury of the storm as it made landfall on the mountainous island. The storm is forecast to bring between 6 an 12 inches of rain across the islands, with more expected in some isolated spots.

It's too soon to tell Maria's impacts to Florida or the USA coast.

The agency said the storm could produce "a risky storm surge" along with "large and destructive waves" that could raise water levels by six to nine feet (1.8 to 2.7 meters) when it cuts its path across the eastern Caribbean.

"Jose is expected to produce total rain accumulations of 3 to 5 inches over eastern Long Island, southeast CT, southern Rhode Island, and southeast MA, including Martha's Vineyard and Nantucket, through Wednesday", the hurricane center said.





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