While the largest population centers in Sandy’s path are still many miles away, the storm has already begun impacting people, with the northern Caribbean being the first to experience Sandy’s wrath.
Much of the devastation in the Caribbean has been the result of heavy rainfall and flooding, with streets turning into rivers in parts of the region.
While the storm made direct landfall in both Jamaica and Cuba, the largest loss of life occurred in Haiti, where 27 people have reportedly lost their lives according to the Associated Press, which is more than half the total loss of life associated with the storm.
Many of the people in Haiti who lost their homes in the 2010 earthquake are still living in “temporary” shelters, which make them more susceptible to storm impacts than those in permanent structures. Eleven people were reported dead in Cuba, while four deaths were reported elsewhere in the region, bringing Sandy’s death toll to 41.
Other impacts across the region feature massive property damage and utility outages. The AP reported that almost 70 percent of Jamaica lost power as a result of the storm. Crops across the region have received serious damage. In some of Jamaica’s parishes, the banana crop could have been completely wiped out.
Luckily for the region, a lull in the weather will follow Sandy, with only one more day of spotty showers and thunderstorms expected for Hispaniola and Puerto Rico. Mostly dry weather elsewhere should aid in recovery efforts.
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