UN Reports Carriacou "Flattened" by Hurricane Beryl

Hurricane Beryl's fury left the small island of Carriacou in Grenada unrecognizable, according to a harrowing report by the United Nations. Simon Springett, UN Resident Coordinator for Barbados and the Eastern Caribbean, painted a picture of "total devastation" after visiting the island in the wake of the storm.

Beryl, the strongest hurricane ever recorded in the Atlantic in June, slammed into Carriacou on July 1st as a Category 4 storm, with winds exceeding 240 kilometers per hour (150 mph). The island, with a population of just over 6, 000, bore the brunt of the hurricane's wrath.

"The entire island is completely affected, " Springett stressed in a video address. "That is literally 100 percent of the population. "

Drone footage and eyewitness accounts corroborated Springett's description. Homes were reduced to rubble, power lines lay tangled across the landscape, and lush vegetation was stripped bare by the relentless wind. Communication infrastructure was completely destroyed, severing contact with the outside world.

Carriacou's natural environment wasn't spared either. Prime Minister Dickon Mitchell of Grenada described the island as suffering "complete and total destruction" of its flora and fauna.

The immediate focus lies on getting emergency aid to Carriacou. Food, water, and medical supplies are desperately needed. Initial reports indicate widespread injuries, with some residents likely unaccounted for amidst the wreckage.

The international community has begun mobilizing. The UN, along with NGOs and regional partners, are coordinating relief efforts. However, the scale of the devastation presents a significant logistical challenge.

Carriacou's flattened airstrip is currently unusable, hindering the delivery of vital supplies. Efforts are underway to clear the runway and establish a temporary air bridge. In the meantime, aid is being transported by ship, a much slower and more complex process.

The long-term recovery for Carriacou is daunting. Rebuilding homes, businesses, and critical infrastructure will require a sustained international effort. The island's once vibrant tourism industry has been decimated, a major blow to its economy.

Hurricane Beryl serves as a stark reminder of the Caribbean's vulnerability to extreme weather events. Experts warn that rising sea levels and warmer ocean temperatures will likely lead to more frequent and powerful storms in the region. The international community must not only focus on immediate relief but also work with Caribbean nations to develop long-term strategies for climate resilience.

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