After hammering Cuba's largest city on Thursday, Hurricane Sandy is moving to the central Bahamas. Sandy has left thousands of villagers homeless after it ripped off their roofs.
One fatality has been reported, bringing the death toll at least three after fatalities in Jamaica and Haiti. Sandy’s 105 mph winds also caused power outages and falling trees across the city of Santiago de Cuba.
Schools and government offices were closed across the Bahamas on Thursday. Residents already cut the branches of the trees. Airports, seaports and bridges will remain closed until Friday, the government announced.
Before Sandy hit Cuba, the government made sure that tourists at the beach resorts in Holguin evacuated before the hurricane arrived. Their quick response to the disasters has been tested. More than 10,000 residents also evacuated, together with the tourists. And people living in the low-lying areas were moved away as well.
Cuba's communist government is known for its rapid response to natural disasters, and people on the Caribbean's largest island have long years of experience with hurricanes.
"We'll move forward," one said. "We'll get out of this hole as we have many other times before."
Cuba is the largest and most populated island in the Caribbean, yet it consistently experiences the lowest death tolls during hurricane season. According to United Nations, it's not because Cubans are lucky but because they're prepared. According to Oxfam, between 1996 and 2002, only 16 people were killed by the six hurricanes that struck Cuba.