Rescue teams struggle to reach first Caribbean victims, with at least seven dead and population stranded without power, running water or communications

Dominica – the first island hit by the full category-five force of Hurricane Maria – is “in a daze”, officials have said, cut off from its Caribbean neighbours in the wake of a storm that destroyed properties, silenced communications and cut off power and running water.

Related: British Virgin Islands brave two storms in two weeks: ‘Maria destroyed most of what was left’

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