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Hurricane Maria rips through Martinique island in Caribbean

9:50am BST - 00:56

Hurricane Maria, the second major storm to hit the Caribbean this month, lashed at the French overseas island of Martinique on Monday with violent winds and torrential rains. Rough cut (no reporter narration).

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ROUGH CUT. NO REPORTER NARRATION. Hurricane Maria, the second major storm to hit the Caribbean this month, lashed at the French overseas island of Martinique on Monday (September 18) with violent winds and torrential rains. The eye of the cyclone passed about 50 km from Martinique, as it began coasting the Caribbean on Monday evening from south to north, generating winds approaching 300 km/h in bursts. Maria is expected to remain a category 4 or 5 storm on the Saffir-Simpson scale, the Miami-based NHC said. The Interior Ministry warned residents of Martinique and Guadeloupe of a high risk of flooding, mudslides or landslides and installed measures to protect vital sites such as a desalination plant and a power plant.

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Hurricane Maria rips through Martinique island in Caribbean

9:50am BST - 00:56