Caribbean Hurricanes

Caribbean Hurricanes

Photo: CIRA /

As the world's humanitarian leader, the United States remains committed to providing life- saving assistance when a disaster strikes. The U.S. Government remains in close communication with government and civil-society officials throughout the region to coordinate relief efforts. Our thoughts and prayers are with those affected by Hurricanes Irma, Jose, and Maria.

How You Can Help

The best way to help those affected by a disaster overseas is to make a monetary donation to a reputable humanitarian organization working in the disaster zone.

As a U.S. government agency, USAID does not accept donations for its crisis response effort. If you wish to donate, you can contribute to the Hurricane Irma Relief Fund at GlobalGiving or to one of the organizations listed below:

Latest Updates

USAID's Office of U.S. Foreign Disaster Assistance deployed a Disaster Assistance Response Team (DART) on September 7 as Hurricane Irma - the strongest Atlantic hurricane on record – barreled across the Caribbean. Disaster experts on the DART were deployed to the region ahead of the storm, and began immediately coordinating with local authorities and humanitarian organizations in St. Martin, Antigua and Barbuda, and The Bahamas to deliver vital humanitarian assistance. Less than two weeks after Hurricane Irma hit, the region braced for more extreme weather as Hurricane Maria  reached the eastern Caribbean, making landfall over Dominica on September 18. USAID’s DART remains activated and is closely coordinating response activities with local authorities and partners on the ground. Locally-based USAID disaster experts stationed throughout the Caribbean continue to liaise with their local government and emergency management agencies to report on conditions on the ground and advise on humanitarian needs.

Last updated: October 16, 2017

October 4, 2017

On the night of September 18, Hurricane Maria struck the eastern Caribbean island of Dominica as a Category 5 storm. Maria’s relentless rains and winds devastated the country, killing at least 27 people and affecting all 71,000 island residents.

Within days of Maria’s passage, members of USAID’s Caribbean Hurricanes Disaster Assistance Response Team (DART)— originally activated for early September’s Hurricane Irma—arrived in Dominica to assess conditions. Noting the critical need for materials to repair roofs, the DART quickly mobilized an initial 400 rolls of heavy-duty plastic sheeting, sufficient to assist up to 20,000 people, from USAID stockpiles in Miami, Florida.

October 4, 2017

Overall, the humanitarian situation in Dominica has improved, with a gradual restoration of road access, as well as electricity and water supplies, according to the UN and other relief organizations. While humanitarian response efforts continue, the Government of the Commonwealth of Dominica (GoCD) and other stakeholders are beginning to shift their focus to early recovery.

October 2, 2017

Members of USAID’s Caribbean Hurricanes Disaster Assistance Response Team (DART) on Dominica are coordinating with stakeholders to meet the urgent needs of hurricane-affected populations. To ensure the rapid delivery of assistance throughout the island, particularly isolated areas, the DART is working closely with Government of the Commonwealth of Dominica (GoCD) officials and Joint Task Force-Leeward Islands (JTF-LI), consisting of members from DoD’s Southern Command.

September 28, 2017

On September 26 and 27, four flights carrying a combined 45 metric tons (MT) of USAID/OFDA relief commodities—including plastic sheeting, hygiene kits, water containers, and blankets sufficient for approximately 30,000 beneficiaries—arrived in Dominica, Saint Kitts and Nevis, and Sint Maarten. With these flights, USAID/OFDA has airlifted a total of more than 151 MT of relief supplies for the humanitarian response in the Caribbean. Previous flights had transported USAID/OFDA relief items to Antigua and Barbuda and The Bahamas.

September 27, 2017

The U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) is airlifting more than 45 metric tons of critical relief supplies-including emergency shelter materials, hygiene kits, water containers, and blankets-to Dominica, St. Maarten, and St. Kitts & Nevis to assist people affected by Hurricanes Irma and Maria.