Barbuda "Totally Demolished" After Hurricane Irma Levels 90% Of All Dwellings

Tyler Durden's picture

Having mauled the Caribbean island of St. Martin overnight, where this morning the French government said that the four "most solid" buildings have been destroyed, Hurricane Irma - now at 185mps for a record 33 straight hours - has just passed north of Puerto Rico, buffeting the US island territory’s capital, San Juan, with heavy downpours and strong winds that scattered tree limbs across roadways, but not before totally demolishing” the island of Barbuda, with 90% of all dwellings leveled, Prime Minister Gaston Browne said.

Browne said that Irma has unleashed "absolute devastation" on the island making Barbuda, home to some 1,800 people, "basically uninhabitable" with preliminary damage estimated at some $150 million.

He said that the island's communication network is 100% destroyed.

A before and after photo confirms the devastation:

"This rebuilding initiative will take years," Browne told local television after a visit to the island, where he confirmed at least one person had died due to the storm. A second storm-related fatality, that of a surfer, was reported on Barbados and the French government said at least two people were killed in Caribbean island territories of St. Martin and Saint Barthelemy.

Irma, with top sustained winds of 185 miles per hour (300 km per hour), was on track to reach Florida on Saturday or Sunday, becoming the second major hurricane to hit the U.S. mainland in as many weeks.

While Irma’s intensity could fluctuate, and its precise course remained uncertain, the storm was expected to remain at least a Category 4 before arriving in Florida.

Irma is not alone, and as reported earlier, two other hurricanes formed on Wednesday. While Katia, in the Gulf of Mexico, poses no threat to the U.S. Hurricane Jose in the open Atlantic, about 1,000 miles (1,610 km) east of the Caribbean’s Lesser Antilles islands, could also eventually threaten the U.S. mainland, a third hurricane landfall on the U.S. in under a month.

According to Reuters, Florida emergency management officials, chastened by Harvey’s devastation, began evacuations days in advance of Irma’s arrival, ordering all tourists to leave the Florida Keys, a resort archipelago off the state’s southern tip, starting Wednesday morning. Evacuation of residents from the Keys was to begin Wednesday evening.

Ed Rappaport, acting National Hurricane Center director, interviewed on Miami television station WFOR-TV, called Irma a “once-in-a-generation storm,” adding that for Florida, “It’s the big one for us.”

Chuck Watson, disaster modeler with Enki Research, said in a note that "Irma is the kind of storm where you get thousands of lives lost. This is not going to be the big slow-motion flood like Harvey - this is a real, honest-to-God hurricane."

Late on Wednesday, the eye of Irma passed just north of Puerto Rico.

“The winds that we are experiencing right now are like nothing we have experienced before,” Puerto Rico Governor Ricardo Rossello told CNN. “We expect a lot of damage, perhaps not as much as was seen in Barbuda.”

At least half of Puerto Rico’s homes and businesses lost electricity by nightfall, according to a Twitter message posted by an island utility executive. According to the Miami Herald, Puerto Rico residents could be left without power for four to six months after Hurricane Irma grazes the island.

"There are going to be blackouts. Areas that will spend three, four months without electricity," Ricardo Ramos, executive director of Puerto Rico's energy agency, said, according to the Spanish-language news agency EFE.

On its current path the core of Irma, which the Miami-based center said marked the strongest hurricane ever recorded in the Atlantic Ocean, was expected to scrape the northern coast of the Dominican Republic on Thursday. It was on a track that would put it near the Turks and Caicos and southeastern Bahamas by Thursday evening.

Trump, whose waterfront Mar-a-Lago estate in Palm Beach, Florida, could take a direct hit from the storm, has already approved emergency declarations for Florida, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands, mobilizing federal disaster relief efforts. He spoke with governors of all three by telephone on Wednesday, the White House said.


Florida Governor Rick Scott said Irma could be more devastating than Hurricane Andrew, a Category 5 storm that struck the state in 1992 and still ranks as one of the costliest ever in the United States.

Residents in most coastal communities of densely populated Miami-Dade County were ordered to move to higher ground beginning at 9 a.m. ET (1300 GMT) on Thursday, Mayor Carlos Gimenez announced on Wednesday. The evacuation orders will affect more than 100,000 residents, the Miami Herald reported. Miami-Dade has a population of 2.7 million.

Scott told a news conference in the Keys that 7,000 National Guard troops would report for duty on Friday, ahead of the storm’s expected arrival. Statewide emergency declarations were issued in both North and South Carolina, and Georgia Governor Nathan Deal declared an emergency for six coastal counties in anticipation of Irma’s arrival.

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sprintjump's picture

Yeah, cause 500 years ago, there was so much fucking concrete everywhere.

BeanusCountus's picture

3 500 year events in the last 3 years? We have an office in Houston and I would beg to differ. Name them please.

Wasn't finished, needed a short break.

To continue, then please present any 500 year blocks of "weather history" for the city of Houston on which you base your statement. I'll take any of them, say from 1000 AD to1500 AD? Maybe then from 500 AD to 1000 AD? Cant wait to see the one from 0 AD to 500 AD! Your statement is full of shit, unless you have the "Weather Channel BC" app.

jin187's picture

All of the category 5 hurricanes that have hit the US have been in the last 100 years.

Sure that has nothing to do with us only classifying hurricanes for the last 100 years.

css1971's picture

Or being able to measure the fuckers.

Arnold's picture

1743- Benjamin Franklin, in Philadelphia, receives a letter from his brother in Boston describing an eclipse that Franklin was unable to see due to overcast skies. The brother wrote that inclement weather followed, leading Franklin to deduce that storms travel.

--Farmer's Almanac

shovelhead's picture

Any mariner would have been able to tell him that without Franklin deducing a thing.

BadSpybot's picture

Haven't we alreday had two or three "Storms of the Century" after only 17 years in this current century. I guess they got tired of calling them such so now it's "unpresidented" and "murderous." 

stampman's picture

More people = more damage.

Who decides what a "500 year event" is?  You?!?  The term is handwaving unscientific bullshit.

ThanksChump's picture

I can tell YOU aren't paying off $180,000 of Earth Science student debt, sir!

divingengineer's picture

1900 Galveston Hurricane, 1889 Johnstown Flood, 1883 Krakatoa eruption, New Madrid quakes of 1811-1812......
Need I go on?
This shit ain't new.

stampman's picture

In Noah's day there must have been a hell of greenhouse gases being emitted by human beings to cause that kind of flood.

Peanut Butter Engineer's picture

Noah and his pets are all vegetarians that eats beans which caused global warming with their byproducts aka farts. In massive dose.

kellys_eye's picture

Given that your hero and avid supporter of MMCC, Obarmy, is contempating purchasing a property in Marthas Vineyard then he's either lying about MMCC or is an idiot - which is it to be?


css1971's picture

500 year events...

What you're doing is scientism, not science. You are an astrologer.

Mtnrunnr's picture

Not that you care to look it up but there is actual science involved in determining what a 500 year event looks like

Withdrawn Sanction's picture

Until your "models" include the effects of both geo-engineering AND detailed electromagnetic interactions with the sun, you're just babbling, parroting lines from the would-be power grabbers.

Realname's picture

Dont move to waterfront property? Do you mean like Al Whore did or like the Obolas are about to do?

francis_the_wonder_hamster's picture

500 year events?  How long have we been measuring hurricane wind speed and rainfall?

Again, that's purely anecdotal and that sort of argument weakens your position.

Speaking of anecdotal evidence, how are those polar bears doing?  Or the research vessel that went out to investigate the receeding arctic ice flows and had to be rescued by icebreakers because they got iced in?  How about the 17 year pause?  


Shemp 4 Victory's picture


You fuckers are almost worse than economists in your predictions.

Clearly there is an urgent need for a new Fake Nobel Prize Award in the Hysteriological Sciences.

Hurry, contact Sveriges Riksbank RIGHT AWAY!

Ajax-1's picture

So true.

Too much snow....It's Global Warming

Too little snow.....It's Global Warming

Too much rain.....It's Global Warming

Too dry..............It's Global Warming

Too many Hurricanes/Typhoons.....It's Global Warming.

Too few Hurricanes/Typhoons........It's Global Warming

X-mas sales down...The weather was bad and shoppers stayed home.

X-mas sales down...The weather was too nice and people didn't want to spend their time at the mall.

Anybody seeing a trend here? The media propaganda machine never misses an opportunity to mislead the Sheeple.

silverserfer's picture

media propaganda machine or just idiots who blame naturaly occuring disaters on global warming much as  people bamed women for their woes  IE salem witch hunts back in the 1700's.  People just need to be slapped

Peanut Butter Engineer's picture

I see a trend, is it global warming?

MozartIII's picture

You breathing is waisting air for people with brains. You expell co2 so you are killing everything! You are evil for existing, its all your falt, everything is your falt! You are a guilty failure! Scientists are killing the world. You should move to northern Siberia to save the planet. Set up a colony, bring all of your friends. Saving the planet starts with you doing this! You can fight Putin in northern Siberia, and support Hillary's global network that she is building there!

Mtnrunnr's picture

Wow. You think that too. We are so fucked. I make 35k a year doing research on this shit BECAUSE I CARE. You, instead, listen to people paid in THE BILLIONS. Who have a monetary interest in keeping you unsure. Meanwhile they ruin flood ins and try to take away crop insurance from farmers. Please tell me why I would lie to you about my research? The warming is breaking our planet.

Seeing Red's picture

No good deed goes unpunished.  The more you know about science and/or engineering, the more true that is with posting on ZH.  Get over it by assuming it's a mostly hopeless cause (not that you shouldn't try to fight the echo-chamber).  You can't take it personally -- it will drive you nuts.

css1971's picture

Many here are highly educated scientists and engineers who recognise a religion when we see it.

sprintjump's picture

You, instead, listen to people paid in THE BILLIONS.

Like, Al Gore???

Blankenstein's picture

Or the Davos elite?


With money-making opportunities rising, traditional climate change advocates -- Al Gore and Greenpeace Executive Director Jennifer Morgan -- will mingle in panel discussions with executives such as HSBC Holdings Plc Chairman Stuart Gulliver and Patrick Yu, president of Cofco Corp., the largest food company in China. They will discuss the nexus between the fight against global warming and business -- both how to stop climate change and how to profit from it.

Billy the Poet's picture

I work at home and make a third that amount. I rarely drive, grow as much of my own food as possible and heat as best I can with carbon neutral firewood. YOU are the one who is causing hurricanes by living high on the hog and using the all latest carbon producing technology. I demand that you stop it before you kill us all.

Mtnrunnr's picture

What the fuck man. You don't know my lifestyle. If we stopped voting for bullshitters we'd have electric cars, a distributed grid to support them and renewable energy to power it all. I'm doing everything I can because I wasn't born with the luxury of land, nope, I have to actually work to buy it. Good on you though. We need more people living simply.

Ajax-1's picture

You need to find on honest way of making a living.

dangerb407's picture

I made $35 k per month doing work from home bullshit targetting financial idiots!!      SO GFYO

jin187's picture

So you've studied the climate for the last few years, and you are now an expert. Answer a few questions for me.

What's the ideal mean temperature of the earth?

What's the ideal sea level?

What's the ideal amount of polar ice?

When did global warming start causing natural disasters?

bloofer's picture

Sounds like you are a graduate assistant working on an advanced degree in being a toady.

CultiVader's picture

I made 35k from home last year! Text me at 123-4567!

BennyBoy's picture


 Mtnrunnr, hey asshole, get with the the new scientific religion branding: It's now called Climate Change not global warming.

And Mr. Scientist, please explain how something that is 0.04% (CO2) of air is causing all this "change" whereas something that is 20% or more (H2O, clouds, rain etc) has almost zero effect in your "scientific" equations. Please direct your comments to people in Houston.

Withdrawn Sanction's picture

"Please tell me why I would lie to you about my research? "

An honest scientist ALWAYS reserves and admits the possibility that he may be wrong. His theory may be incorrect (suffering from, say, an omitted variable bias); his data may be wrong (suffering from measurement error or small sample size bias), or his analytical technique may be wrong or erroneously applied (a linear model applied to sinusoidal patterns, for example) There's lots of room in any inquiry for error and human beings are esp. prone to it. And since the peer review process in climate science is a thoroughly corrupt echo chamber, there's almost no way to correct/limit errors.

The long and short of it is you dont have to be a liar to be wrong. However, if like Lady MacBeth, you are, well...

Pumpkin's picture

Please tell me why I would lie to you about my research?


I'll ponder a guess here.  BECAUSE YOU MAKE MONEY OFF IT!!  Who is getting gov funding that does not share your view??  Eyes to see, ears to hear.

stampman's picture

And be sure to wave at the flying saucers coming out of the hollow Earth at the North Pole.

merizobeach's picture

Ah, the ole hollow-Earthers: the only people more clueless, ludicrous, and obnoxious than the flat-Earthers.  If only stupidity was a fatal disease instead of just terminally annoying...

justa minute's picture

yeah what happened to the sattelites?

RedPilledMAGAWarrior's picture

lol satellites are a hoax, look it up. Seriously, have an open mind and google satellite hoax

divingengineer's picture

Ass-spelunking isn't a science, but more of a lifestyle.

jin187's picture

We get a cat5 storm about once every 25 years on average. It's been 25 years. Sorry if that doesn't fit your computer model that said New York would be under 12 feet of water, there would be no polar ice cap, and that there would be no ozone layer by 2015. What year is it again?

css1971's picture

So you are pro massive expansion in nuclear power stations then. As a scientist.

nmewn's picture

"This is why we (scientists) have been warning people. keep calling us stupid though, the storms will get worse."

Well you are stupid. Yet, still so full of all that confident arrogance that makes you a really special danger.

You will now give us the precise lat-long of where a known hurricane is going to be in just 3-4 days time while confirming its direction, speed & strength...tia ;-)

shovelhead's picture

Sorry, we are incapable of being useful at this present time...