Hurricane Matthew makes landfall in SC, weakens to Cat 1


Matthew, the most powerful hurricane to threaten the Eastern Seaboard in a decade, ravaged Haiti's western peninsula on Tuesday, killing as many as 877 people with torrential rains and winds up to 145 miles per hour, Reuters estimated.

Officials in the region said their biggest worry was a storm surge of as much as three metres of water that could be pushed onto land. The mayor also added that 20 people were still missing.

Many are believed to have died after uprooted trees fell and crushed houses. The entire house fell on us. "I couldn't get out", said 27-year-old driver Jean-Pierre Jean-Donald.

At least five people died in hurricane-related incidents in Florida - two women killed by falling trees, a third woman from a heart attack and a couple killed by carbon monoxide as they ran a generator in their home's garage. His young daughter stood by his side, crying "Mommy".

With cellphone networks down and roads flooded, aid has been slow to reach hard-hit areas in Haiti.

In the town of Anse-d'Hainault, seven people died of cholera - a disease that did not exist in Haiti until United Nations peacekeepers introduced it after a 2010 natural disaster that killed some 200,000 people.

US damages, however, are mostly limited to structures and infrastructure. The ship has heavy-lift helicopters, bulldozers, fresh water delivery vehicles and two surgical operating rooms.

Dozens of streets and intersections in the Charleston area are impassable because of flooding and downed trees as a result of rains and winds from Hurricane Matthew. The U.S. Atlantic coast has still more to brace for in these coming days.

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The National Hurricane Center said Saturday morning that the storm's center made landfall just southeast of the town of McClellanville.

Les Anglais was the first place in Haiti that Matthew reached, as a powerful Category 4 storm before it moved north, lost strength and lashed central Florida on Friday.

There were at least four storm-related deaths in Florida but no immediate reports of significant damage in cities and towns where Matthew swamped streets, toppled trees and knocked out power to about 1 million households and businesses.

Nearly 900 Haitians are known to have lost their lives as Hurricane Matthew flattened the island on it's way north.

Gov. Nikki Haley is telling state residents to remain calm as SC bears the brunt of Hurricane Matthew on Saturday morning.

According to forecasters, Matthew could bring destructive winds and storm surges as high as nine feet (2.7 meters) in some areas, with eight to 15 inches of rain. Drew Garrison, a Haiti-based missionary who flew in Friday, said several fishing villages along the coast were submerged and he could see bodies floating in the water.

Hurricane Matthew ripped through Haiti's southern coast on Tuesday, tearing off rooftops, flooding streets and fields, and toppling trees and electric lines in a country that's still struggling to recover from the devastating natural disaster that hit six years ago.