Hurricane Dorian death toll rises to 44 in Bahamas

The death toll from Hurricane Dorian in the Bahamas has risen to 44 after the monster storm battered the Grand Bahama and Abaco Islands for over a day and a half last week, according to the health minister.

Hurricane Dorian death toll rises to 44 in Bahamas

Hurricane Dorian death toll rises to 44 in Bahamas

STEPANAKERT, SEPTEMBER 9,  ARTSAKHPRESSThe number of people killed in the hurricane, which struck the area as a dangerous Category 5 storm, was raised to 30 late last week, Fox News reported.

Officials have warned that the number of deaths likely would increase as crews search devastated areas of the northern Bahamas, especially those cut off by flooding and debris.

Dorian also has been blamed for at least five deaths in the southeastern U.S. and one in Puerto Rico.

Dorian's punishing winds and torrential rain have battered the Grand Bahama and Abaco Islands, which were known for their marinas, golf courses and all-inclusive resorts.

Major Clarence Ingram, a divisional commander of the Bahamas division for the Salvation Army, told Fox News some buildings were completely underwater.

"There are buildings completely swept away by the wind. It's just incredible, the amount of damage that's happened over there, of course, trees and cars and all the other stuff blown away," Ingram said.

Bahamian officials have said they received a "tremendous" number of calls from people in flooded homes. Desperate callers trying to find loved ones left messages with local radio stations.

The government has since announced a telephone hotline that Bahamians could call to report missing family members.

The United Nations and the International Red Cross quickly started mobilizing to deal with the unfolding humanitarian crisis in the wake of the most powerful hurricane on record ever to hit the Bahamas.