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    Powerful Hurricane Matthew lashes Bahamas after hammering Haiti, Cuba

    By By Alex Sosnowski, AccuWeather senior meteorologist.
    October 07, 2016, 7:49:59 AM EDT

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    Dangerous Hurricane Matthew will continue to lash the Bahamas with flooding rain, high winds and pounding surf through Thursday night.

    Matthew, currently a Category 4 hurricane, made the northwestward turn on Wednesday after turning deadly in the Caribbean.

    The strongest part of the hurricane, the eye wall, passed over the western part of New Providence Island in the Bahamas during Thursday morning.


    Hurricane Matthew will then pass over the island of Grand Bahama and the major city of Freeport during Thursday evening.

    Interaction with the large mountainous islands of Hispaniola and Cuba caused Matthew to weaken some slightly Tuesday night into Wednesday.

    "Matthew remains a very dangerous hurricane," according to AccuWeather Hurricane Expert Dan Kottlowski.


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    The slow-moving nature of the hurricane will translate to days rather than hours of pounding surf, high winds and heavy rain on the Bahamas.

    In addition to life-threatening conditions, major property damage and inundation is likely due to powerful winds, storm surge and flash flooding.

    "A storm surge of 10-15 feet can occur, along with the potential for a foot or more of rain on some of the Bahamas," AccuWeather Meteorologist Mike Doll said.

    As a result, significant inundation is likely on some of the islands.

    People are encouraged to heed evacuation orders as they are given. Small craft should be secured in port.

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    Major travel disruptions will continue in the region.

    Cruise, freight and charter airline interests should be prepared to change itineraries until the storm has passed and damage to ports and small airstrips have been assessed. Commercial airline delays and cancellations are likely as the storm approaches. Some major airports will close.

    In the wake of the storm, many areas will be in need of assistance. Power may be out for days. Food, fresh water and medical items may be in short supply.

    Seas and surf along the coast of the southeastern United States from Florida to Georgia and the Carolinas will build and become dangerous into this weekend. Matthew is expected make landfall along the upper east coast of Florida and cause damage from flooding, high winds and beach erosion in the coastal areas.

    Matthew made its first landfall on the Haiti Tiburon Peninsula during Tuesday morning, before making a second landfall on the eastern tip of Cuba during Tuesday evening.

    Matthew has already been responsible for a number of fatalities across the Caribbean, according to the Associated Press. More than 100 people have been killed in Haiti alone.

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