Page last updated at 06:21 GMT, Tuesday, 9 September 2008 07:21 UK

Caribbean's devastating storm season

This year's hurricane season has lashed the Caribbean, causing death and destruction from Louisiana's coastline to the eastern tip of the island of Hispaniola. Click on the map for details of the affected regions.

USATurks and CaicosCubaDominican RepublicJamaicaHaiti

A resident in Gonaives, Haiti, 07/09
The port city of Gonaives was devastated by Hanna

The poorest nation in the western hemisphere has suffered most from 2008's storm season.

Officials estimate more than 500 people died in Tropical Storm Hanna - mostly in the port city of Gonaives.

Hundreds of thousands were forced to flee Hanna, which destroyed houses and deluged cities.

An international aid effort has been launched amid reports of mass shortages of food and drinking water.

The government has expressed fears of a national catastrophe, as floodwaters from Hanna receded revealing the extent of the devastation.

Earlier Hurricane Gustav had already left more than 70 people dead and Tropical Storm Fay had killed nine.

Ike, the fourth storm to hit Haiti this season, has so far killed more than 60 people.

The city of Baracoa, eastern Cuba
Although downgraded to Category Two over Cuba, Ike still caused damage

Hurricane Ike has pounded north-eastern Cuba with 120mph (195km/h) winds, torrential rains and massive waves that have rolled through coastal towns, killing four people.

State-run television showed waves slamming into sea walls and in the city of Baracoa surging as high as five-storey apartment buildings.

Officials said more than 800,000 people were evacuated as Ike approached.

Hurricane Gustav damaged about 100,000 homes on the east of the island and emergency officials say they have never had to deal with two storms in such close succession.

Motorcyclist in Santo Domingo, 02/09
More than a dozen Dominicans have died this storm season

Although better-equipped to deal with storms than Haiti, with which it shares the island of Hispaniola, the Dominican Republic has reported more than a dozen deaths from this year's storm season.

More than 40,000 people were driven from their homes by Ike, and one man was crushed by a falling tree.

Earlier, Hurricane Gustav had battered the nation, which lies to the east of Haiti, leaving eight people dead.

Children in New Orleans, 02/09
Some were upset at the evacuation, but New Orleans was spared disaster

The most deadly storm of the season so far has been Hurricane Gustav, which killed a total of 26 people in the US.

The entire city of New Orleans was evacuated amid fears of a repeat of Hurricane Katrina, which wrecked the city in 2005.

A disaster of that magnitude was averted, with 19 people killed in Louisiana, four in Georgia and three in Mississippi.

Earlier Tropical Storm Fay left at least 10 people dead in Florida after hugging the state's coastline for days, making landfall several times.

A house collapses in Kingston, 29/08
Gustav destroyed homes during its passage through Kingston

Although spared the worst of the hurricane season this year, Jamaica was battered by Gustav when it was at tropical-storm strength.

Winds of up to 110km/h (70mph) ripped the roofs off houses and left the capital, Kingston, deserted.

Nine deaths were blamed on the storm.

Floods in Providenciales, Turks and Caicos 07/09
The upmarket holiday island of Providenciales was deluged

No deaths have yet been reported on the tiny British island grouping.

The territory was pummelled by Hanna - then classified as a hurricane - for four days.

And Hurricane Ike brought horizontal sheets of rain and winds that tore through roofs.

Ike hit the islands as a Category Four storm with 135mph (215km/h) winds, damaging 80% of the houses on Grand Turk, home to about 2,500 of the islands' 22,000 residents.

Premier Michael Misick said people who had not taken refuge in shelters were cowering in cupboards and under stairwells "just holding on for life".

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