BY STEPHANIE AGUILAR
Southern California hasn’t seen a storm any time recently, but the east coast of the United States has been hit hard by Hurricane Matthew. It formed near the Windward Islands on Sept. 28, 2016.
As timed passed, the tropical storm increased winds to become a hurricane; enough power to become a Category 5, the strongest ranked hurricane in the Atlantic since Hurricane Felix in 2007.
The path of the hurricane started in the Caribbean Sea, then followed up north of the United States, to end in North Carolina. Hurricane Matthew made its first landfall on eastern Cuba and Haiti on Oct. 4, 2016. The storm trailed through the Bahamas to make another landfall again on Florida on Oct. 6, 2016. Leaving a trail of heavy downpour and winds up to 107 mph, the storm went north to trail off back to the Atlantic in North Carolina.
Even though the storm decreased categories as it went up the east coast, the damage it caused will cost at least 10 billion dollars for United States. The heavy rains caused flooding in most areas with the highest being 17.5 inches of rain. Dams and rivers were overflowing at high records. Streets went under water as houses were flooded up close to the second floor. Thousands of rescues were performed to save citizens from their cars or homes. Beaches began to disappear with waves eating whatever laid in their path including beach houses.
Walt Disney World was closed for the fourth time since its opening in 1971. Freeways, bridges, roads, and interstates were flooded or even completely washed out. Thousands of people are returning home with their house flooded, no electricity, and no water. The death toll in the United States is up to 46. However, the death toll in Haiti is at least 1,000 and counting.
At least, 80% percent of towns and villages were destroyed; those closest to the path of Hurricane Matthew. Farmlands are uprooted, flooded by saltwater and crops are destroyed. Cases of cholera have increased since its appearance in the earthquake of 2010. Hospitals and clinics are flooded with new cases each day with limited medical supplies. Power, communication and transportation are difficult to proceed.
The United Nations launched an emergency appeal for nearly $120 million to help aid the country. However, more than 1.4 million people need more humanitarian aid. Haiti once again has to rebuild itself from another natural disaster.