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Hurricane Irma: Stranded Scot tells of 'devastating' toll

Nicole Toppin, from Glasgow, is stuck in Tortola in the British Virgin Islands.

Nicole Toppin: Stranded in Tortola amidst chaos if Irma.
Nicole Toppin: Stranded in Tortola amidst chaos if Irma. Facebook/Nicole Toppin / Nasa Worldview

A Scottish woman stranded on the British Virgin Islands has told of the "devastating" impact Hurricane Irma is having on the area.

Nicole Toppin, from Glasgow, said the storm had wreaked havoc on roads, communications and electricity supplies on the island of Tortola.

As the hurricane tears across the Caribbean, British holidaymakers are facing major disruption to their travel plans.

Category four Irma is the most powerful Atlantic Ocean storm in recorded history, bringing with it sustained winds of 185mph.

At least 23 people have been killed so far with thousands of buildings destroyed and an estimated 1.2 million people affected.

More than five million people have been told to evacuate Florida.

Speaking on STV News Tonight, Ms Toppin said: "There's not really a tree left, buildings are down... looting going on.

"It's pretty devastating."

Severe damage has been reported across the archipelago - including on Richard Branson's private residence Necker Island - and the governor of the islands has said a state of emergency in place.

https://stv.tv/news/uk/1397285-travel-advice-for-british-holidaymakers-as-hurricane-irma-sweeps-across-the/ | default

Ms Toppin continued: "We woke up to a community pulling themselves together and doing whatever they can.

"People can't get out of their properties because their roads are blocked, the trees have fallen, all the electricity cables have fallen.

"We've been moving between two houses because one has sometimes got electricity and the other we're sleeping in.

She added: "We came into town just to get communications and there were cars overturned, ferries in the middle of the road.

"There isn't really any relief response at the moment but everybody's just more concentrating on the fact that they're alive and making sure that their friends are safe and their families are safe."

Further storm surges are expected on the islands, while the British Armed Forces have been deployed to the Caribbean to help with the relief effort.

"We've got water and things, we've prepared food," said Ms Toppin.

"There's eight of us sticking together and just hoping for the best, to be honest."

https://stv.tv/news/international/1397337-british-military-joins-hurricane-irma-relief-effort/ | default

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