Hurricane Sandy claims first fatality in Jamaica
At least one person was killed as Hurricane Sandy made landfall on Wednesday in south-eastern Jamaica near Kingston with winds of up to 135 kilometres per hour.
Cleveland Scott, 74, died when a landslide caused a boulder to fall on his house in Bedward Garden near the capital, The Gleaner newspaper said, citing police. The storm also ripped off roofs and uprooted trees in some areas.
More than 1,000 people fled to emergency shelters across the Caribbean island nation, the Office of Disaster Preparedness and Emergency Management told the newspaper. More were expected as the rains continue overnight, it said.
Sandy triggered hurricane warnings across Jamaica as well as the eastern provinces of Cuba, the Miami-based US National Hurricane Center said.
The storm was due to hit the eastern coast of Cuba early on Thursday before heading towards the Bahamas, the centre said.
Haiti and the east coast of the US state of Florida were expected to be hit by the weather system at tropical storm strength, the centre said.