Dorian’s death toll at 60

Hurricane Dorian’s death toll increased to 60 yesterday after two bodies were recovered on Abaco, police said.

The bodies were that of a man and woman removed from “the hurricane-affected area”.

Police added that search and recovery efforts are ongoing.

The total count of Abaco deaths is 51. Officials said there were nine confirmed deaths on Grand Bahama.

Minister of Health Dr. Duane Sands said yesterday only six Abaco victims have been identified.

More than 400 people are still missing after Hurricane Dorian, which left parts of Abaco and Grand Bahama in ruins.

Several storm survivors who claim to have watched their family members die have said they are losing hope of their bodies ever being recovered.

Minister of National Security Marvin Dames assured that officials are doing all they can to recover bodies and provide an accurate death toll.

“I know that there have been a lot of pronouncements on social media and persons [who made the] claim of walking through bodies after bodies,” he said.

“The reality is we can only count what we found, what we have and where we have been led. And as we conduct the strategic approach, we’re going in every settlement, every cay throughout the Abacos and Grand Bahama.”

He added, “The mass casualty expert from the U.S. government commended The Bahamas for its approach to this.

“It is not uncommon in searches, when you have a disaster of this magnitude that is so widespread…for teams and individuals to find bodies weeks later, and maybe in some cases skeletal remains maybe months later.”

Dames added, “We will be guided by the bodies that we found in addition to the number of missing persons.

“As we work to reconcile those numbers, we have to bear in mind that, you know, not because we have X amount of missing persons that those persons are assumed dead, because they’re not.

“They may be in a shelter somewhere. They may have left the island and went to a relative. So, there are all sorts of things that the investigators are doing on the back end to reconcile those numbers.”

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Rachel Knowles

Rachel joined The Nassau Guardian in January 2019. Rachel covers national issues. Education: University of Virginia in Charlottesville, BA in Foreign Affairs and Spanish

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