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The Prince of Wales visits the Caribbean: The Final Day

19th November 2017

His Royal Highness visits the Caribbean

On his final day in the Caribbean, The Prince of Wales praised the resilience of the people of Dominica as he saw for himself the damage wreaked to the island by Hurricane Maria.

His Royal Highness stood among the ruins of Pichelin village, which was battered by torrential flooding and high winds in September, and sympathised with the residents who have remained.

Along with International Development Secretary Penny Mordaunt, The Prince of Wales walked through the village shaking the hands of locals and stopping to chat briefly and even watched a dance performance by local school children.

Khalin Thomas, 26, whose grandmother's general store was washed away said: "We managed to survive the hurricane somehow, the village is between two rivers - but luckily we're still here.

"The car next to my grandmother's store was across the street and the water just picked it up and tossed across the street."

Dominica's Prime Minister Roosevelt Skerrit joined the prince for the visit. Speaking last week at Cop 23, the UN's climate change talks, Mr Skerrit said: ''Two months later 95% of the country remains without electricity, our water systems are compromised, and many citizens remain displaced and in shelters.''

Later in the day, The Prince visits Bellevue Chopin Farm and speaks to local farmers about how their business has been impacted following Hurricane Maria and visited Pointe Michel, where His Royal Highness was able to see the powerful effects of Hurricane Maria. A gorge opened up in the town following heavy rain and flash flooding.

 

The Prince of Wales meeting residents in Pointe Michel on Dominica, as he continues his tour of hurricane-ravaged Caribbean islands.

The Prince of Wales meeting residents in Pointe Michel on Dominica, as he continues his tour of hurricane-ravaged Caribbean islands.

Residents are still waiting for electricity to be reconnected, but homes are being made watertight with tarpaulin roofs and water is now being piped to the majority of islanders.

The destructive force of hurricanes Irma and Maria was unprecedented. Two category 5 hurricanes struck the Caribbean and United States in less than a fortnight. More than two million people were affected, with extensive damage in the worst affected areas.

The UK responded immediately after the first hurricane struck, with the Royal Fleet Auxiliary Mounts Bay pre-stocked with humanitarian aid and disaster response expertise in readiness for the hurricane season.

The UK military played a leading role in the immediate humanitarian response, re-establishing airport access; delivering and distributing emergency aid to remote locations; helping restore security and calm; and helping patch up power stations and water treatment plants. Military engineers are continuing to advise local authorities, and helping to deliver short-term recovery projects such as the airport repairs in Anguilla.