Hurricane Fiona causing 'catastrophic' flooding in Puerto Rico as the territory remains without power

Hurricane Fiona made landfall along the extreme southwestern coast of Puerto Rico, near Punta Tocon, at 3:20 p.m. ET Sunday with winds of 85 mph, according to the National

Hurricane Center. The hurricane is already causing catastrophic flooding as it moves just west of Puerto Rico and heads for the Dominican Republic, the center said in a 5

p.m. update. The hurricane center is forecasting 12 to 18 inches of rainfall with a local maximum of 30 inches, particularly across eastern and southern Puerto Rico. Four

to 8 inches of rainfall is expected for northern and eastern parts of the Dominican Republic, with a local maximum of 12 inches possible along the northeast coast. “These

rains will produce life-threatening and catastrophic flash and urban flooding across Puerto Rico and the eastern Dominican Republic, along with mudslides and landslides in areas

of higher terrain,” the hurricane center said. All of Puerto Rico lost power earlier Sunday, according to PowerOutage.us, as the Category 1 storm approached the islands.

Many rivers on the eastern side of the territory are in moderate to major flood stage. One river in the southeast has risen over 12 feet in less than seven hours and is

now over 25 feet, breaking the previous record of 24.79 feet set in 2017 during Hurricane Maria. Hurricane Fiona is the third of the 2022 Atlantic Hurricane Season and

forecast to become a major hurricane – a storm of Category 3 or higher – in about 48 hours, east of the Bahamas. Tropical storm conditions are expected to reach portions

of the Dominican Republic within the next few hours and then in the Turks and Caicos Islands and portions of the southeastern Bahamas by early Tuesday.