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Hurricane Elsa rages across Barbados

Barry Alleyne

Hurricane Elsa rages across Barbados
Hurricane Elsa (NOAA)

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Forget Tropical Storm. Elsa is now a full-fledged hurricane, and Barbados is feeling its wrath.

The cyclone is now whipping the island with strong winds and heavy showers.

And Barbadians are already feeling the pain, with early reports of roofs being blown, galvanized fences blown away, and trees felled mostly in the southern part of the country.

Heavy rains are also pounding the northern part of the island, based on radio call-in information.

In the central part of the island, residents of St George were dealing with power and water outages as part of the Barbados Water Authority’s planned shut-downs.

The roof of a housing unit in Gall Hill, Christ Church was blown off.

Reports also indicated that roofs were blown away from two houses in Inch Marlow, Christ Church, leaving homeowners open to the elements.

Minister of Home Affairs, Wilfred Abrahams, in a 7:30 a.m. update to the country, said they were not in a position to do anything at the moment but would do so when the all-clear is given.

“We want you to keep sending in reports to the Department of Emergency Management. As soon as we are in a position to get to you we will do so,” Abrahams said.

“We are getting reports of damage across the island. We are also getting reports of power being out. The utility company cannot come out now to fix the power. We can only take information, but we will get to you as soon as we can. Please be safe. Our principal concern now is the protection of life.”

Areas also affected since the storm reached landfall just after 7 a.m. are Rose Hill, St Peter, Bath Land, St John, and Oistins, Christ Church where mostly powerful winds are doing damage.

Elsa, the first named storm of 2021 in the tropical Atlantic, arrived as forecasters predicted just before 8 a.m. packing winds of 60 miles per hour, and hurricane strength gusts.

The powerful winds and rain were associated with feeder bands associated with the cyclone which spread around 100 miles from the centre of the system.

The Barbados Meteorological Service has forecasted that Barbados could be dumped between six and eight inches of rain today. (BA)