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  1. ITV Report

Hurricane Maria: At least 15 dead on Dominica after direct hit

Debris lays all over a street in Dominica.

More than 15 people are dead and 20 remain missing after Hurricane Maria's direct hit on Dominica, the prime minister has said.

Roosevelt Skerrit cried as he spoke to a reporter on the nearby island of Antigua.

He said more than 15 people died because of the storm and that it was a miracle that the death toll was not in the hundreds.

The centre of the Category 4 storm hit Dominica with massive force late Monday night and early Tuesday, destroying hundreds of homes and cutting off the mountainous island's communication systems and shutting its airport.

Mr Skerrit said Dominica "is going to need all the help the world has to offer".

UK aid teams have arrived in Dominica to asses the damage and work to provide supplies the island needs.

Initial reports from Department for International Development (DfID) teams suggest widespread destruction, with 90% of buildings damaged or destroyed by the hurricane.

The British Virgin Islands, which suffered the wrath of Irma resulting in widespread devastation, was "spared the worst" of Maria and initial assessments suggest fresh damage was relatively low, said the governor Gus Jaspert.

Assault Engineers clearing a flooded section of North Coast Road in Tortola. Credit: MoD/PA

DfID said another UK aid team has also travelled to Montserrat, another British overseas territory, to assess the impact on the island - but that initial reports suggest the damage to buildings is not extensive.

Work to prepare the overseas territory Anguilla for the impact of Hurricane Maria also proved hugely successful in preventing further damage to infrastructure, DfID said.