Hurricane Maria Leaves Dominica Devastated, Approaching Puerto Rico

Just one Category 5 hurricane has hit Puerto Rico in recorded history, back in 1928.

Maria will move near the Turks and Caicos Islands and southeastern Bahamas Thursday night and Friday, the hurricane center said. After passing over the island of Dominica early Tuesday, the potent system is moving to the west-northwest wind highest sustained winds of 165 miles per hour around its center.

The storm is expected to bring up to 16 inches of rain to the US and British Virgin Islands and up to 25 inches to Puerto Rico, causing potentially deadly flash floods and mudslides.

"Extremely dangerous" Hurricane Maria hit Puerto Rico Wednesday morning and is expected to punish the USA territory with life-threatening winds for 12 to 24 hours, forecasters say.

Barnes said a high pressure system and weak steering currents in the models are keeping the storm away from SC.

Gov. Kenneth Mapp warned residents to remain cautious as strong winds continued to lash the island. Collomb says Martinique's airport is still operating. More than 3,000 people suffered injuries and 225 died.

Maria is likely finishing up an eye wall replacement cycle, the hurricane center said. Maria, which comes during a hurricane season that has left many dead and billions of dollars in damages, was recently a category three storm. Wind gusts of up to 63 miles per hour were already being reported in St. Croix in the early evening.

Hurricane Maria was recently upgraded to a Category 5 storm, and several islands in the Caribbean are about to feel its devastating effects.

Jose weakened to a tropical storm Tuesday night. It is forecast to remain an extremely unsafe Category 4 or 5 hurricane.

According to government officials, one person was killed when a tree fell and two others went missing in a shipwreck off the coast of the territory.

"We need to be together right now", he said.

President Trump had earlier offered his support via Twitter: "Puerto Rico being hit hard by new monster Hurricane".

There's a sense that Maria is going to be worse than Irma, she said.

About 40 percent of the island is without power. Around 40 percent of the island - 80,000 homes - were without power and flooding was accounted for in a few groups.

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