The storm is following a similar path to Irma, one of the most powerful in decades, and relief workers raced to secure loose debris that have the potential to make Maria more hazardous if picked up by high winds.
Damage on the British Virgin Islands is unclear after Maria skirted past early on Wednesday.
“Our islands are extremely vulnerable right now,” the territory’s premier Orlando Smith said in a statement, warning that the storm could turn debris left by Irma into dangerous projectiles.
A hurricane warning was also in place for Montserrat, with a hurricane watch applied to Anguilla and the Turks and Caicos islands.
After crossing Puerto Rico, Maria is due to pass just north of the northeast coast of the Dominican Republic on Wednesday night and Thursday.
Maria comes just days after the region was hit by Hurricane Irma, which ranked as one of the most powerful Atlantic storms on record and left a trail of destruction on several Caribbean islands. Stay with us for the latest updates.
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