30 August 2015
Tropical storm Erika has killed dozens and destroyed island infrastructure setting Dominica “back by 20 years,” says Prime Minister Skerrit.
A plane carrying humanitarian aid took off from Venezuela toward the small Caribbean island of Dominica Saturday, where the tropical storm Erika has left 27 people dead and over 30 missing.
The emergency aid from the ALBA alliance of nations will go towards helping the victims of the storm and supporting the government as it attempts to recover from the devastating impact to the country’s infrastructure.
ALBA, whose main headquarters lie in Caracas, Venezuela, airlifted the aid from the capital Caracas to the Dominica capital of Roseau, where Prime Minister Roosevelt Skerrit expressed “great gratitude” for the show of solidarity.
Venezuela to send more aid to Dominica
“The situation can be very difficult, but we are comforted by the fact that we have friends who are able to assist and share the little that they have with Dominica at this time,” Prime Minister Skerrit told teleSUR.
Thanks to President Maduro and the people of Venezuela
“I really want to thank President Maduro, the government of Venezuela and the people of Venezuela for this extraordinary effort which they are making to assist us,” added Skerrit.
The Prime Minister stated that the island has seen great loss of lives and major destruction of homes and infrastructure, including the country’s main airport.
“The destruction has really set Dominica back by 20 years,” he said. “In a few hours, it has wiped away the tremendous successes we have had in the last 15 years.”
The storm has also wiped out roads and bridges, leaving several communities isolated. The government has flown in via helicopter food, water and medical supplies as well as people to assist these communities, said Skerrit.
The worst storm in decades
Tropical storm Erika hit Dominica Thursday, dumping over 10 inches of rain on the island in six hours, in what has been called the worst storm in decades.
According to teleSUR correspondent Alison Kentish, the island’s many mountains created landslides and burst river banks, leading to the considerable damage.
Kentish also points out that Roseau is the only capital city in the Eastern Caribbean with a river flowing through it. After the storm, the river overflowed, destroying one of the bridges leading into the city and completely washing away one school.
Communication across the island has also been affected with telephone poles down, while various parts of the island reportedly have no electricity or potable water.
Source: Dominica President Thanks ALBA for Aid in Wake of Deadly Storm TeleSUR