At least eight people are known to have died when a cyclone battered the island of Mauritius in the Indian Ocean last week.
GV PAN ACROSS Wrecked houses
SV People and belongings. (3 shots)
GV Large building with roof missing
CU Roofing hanging in air
SV Snapped off telegraph pole and wires
CU AND GV Uprooted trees
CU Rushing river water PAN women washing clothes at bankside. (4 shots)
SV AND GV Japanese trawler part submerged
Initials VS 4.40 VS 4.50
Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved
Background: At least eight people are known to have died when a cyclone battered the island of Mauritius in the Indian Ocean last week. And in its wake, the 130-mile-an-hour winds (207 kph) left a trail of wrecked homes, sunken boats and uprooted crops.
Cyclone Gervais struck the island on February 6 and, within hours, had done several million dollars worth of damage. Perhaps the most serious aspect of the havoc is that an estimated 20 percent of the Mauritius sugar crop is thought to have been destroyed.
The 850,000 people of Mauritius were without water and electricity three days after the cyclone struck and thousands were without shelter. It will be some weeks before the island telephone system is restored to normal.
The first rescue operations were mounted by British naval units stationed on the island. A U.S. Seventh Fleet supply ship later landed food and medical supplies. Assistance was also promised from the Soviet Union.