Hurricane Maria, a "potentially catastrophic" hurricane categorized as Category 5 storm made landfall on Dominica late Monday and continued its path toward the US territory of Puerto Rico.
A National Hurricane Center statement said Maria is the strongest storm on record to make landfall in Dominica. It came ashore on the island country at 9:15 p.m. It had winds of 160 miles per hour.
The mammoth storm measured by an US Air Force Reserve C-130 Hurricane Hunter was moving west-northwest at 9 mph.
"My roof is gone," Dominica Prime Minister Roosevelt Skerrit said in a Facebook post. "I am at the complete mercy of the hurricane. House is flooding."
Later, he said, "I have been rescued."
Dominica is a small island with a population of nearly 74,000 about halfway between Puerto Rico and Trinidad and Tobago, according to the CIA World Factbook. It’s nearly 290 square miles (751 square kilometers) and “slightly more than four times the size of Washington DC.”