Many people are without adequate shelter as Hurricane Dorian's category 5 winds and rains caused "extensive damage" to the islands of Abaco and Grand Bahama, according to initial assessments from authorities and Red Cross officials on the ground.
As many as 13,000 homes have been severely damaged or destroyed, according to a statement from the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) and extensive flooding has created an "urgent need" for clean water as wells become contaminated with saltwater.
“We don’t yet have a complete picture of what has happened. But it is clear that Hurricane Dorian has had a catastrophic impact," Sune Bulow, Head of IFRC's Emergency Operation Center in Geneva, said Monday.
"We anticipate extensive shelter needs, alongside the need for short-term economic support, as well as for clean water and health assistance.”
The IFRC said it has released 250,000 Swiss francs (US$252,000) "to bolster the first wave" of its response as it provides around 500 families with emergency shelter assistance.
"Hundreds of trained Red Cross volunteers, emergency response vehicles and more than 30 truck loads of relief supplies are being mobilized to help people living in the path of Hurricane Dorian," the statement added.