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News / Nation & World

Dorian damage in Bahamas totals $3.4 billion

Official death toll remains at 67; 282 people still missing

By Jacqueline Charles, Miami Herald
Published: November 17, 2019, 7:53pm

Hurricane Dorian, the monster storm that struck the Bahamas with punishing 185 mph sustained winds and 25-foot storm surges in early September, caused an estimated $3.4 billion in damages, according to a new report by the Inter-American Development Bank.

The amount, which puts the Bahamas on a difficult path to reconstruction, is equivalent to one-fourth of the country’s gross domestic product. That’s equivalent to the United States losing the combined economies of Florida, California and Texas, the report said.

The IDB said the Bahamas government asked it to do the study following Dorian’s trail of destruction which, according to the study, left 29,500 people homeless or jobless — or both.

The official death toll remains at 67, though the report acknowledges that 282 people were still missing as of late October.

“Reconstruction efforts will last many years and will require a well-coordinated participation of public and private sectors, civil society and the international community,” said Daniela Carrera-Marquis, the representative of the Inter-American Development Bank.

Omar Bello, a lead author of the report, said the Bahamas will require major investments as a result of Dorian’s destruction.