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Late season storm adds to Dominican Republic flooding

Late season storm adds to Dominican Republic flooding

The Dominican Republic, already devastated by earlier flooding from this year's hurricanes and tropical storms, saw extensive additional damage and death Tuesday from Tropical Storm Olga.

   The late season storm, coming two weeks after the official end to the hurricane season, caused extensive flooding in Santiago that led to seven deaths.

   The storm was not heavy enough to significantly impact shipping or port activities, but will provide a further drag on recovery efforts from Tropical Storm Noel and on the Dominican economy. The flooding was aggravated when officials decided a dam above Santiago, the second-largest city in the Dominican Republic, needed to be drained to prevent its collapse. That flooded residential areas and led to some helicopter rescues from rooftops. But the devastation would have been much worse if the dam had simply failed.

   The storm also caused a major mudslide in Santiago Province in Puerto Rico, killing one man who was a passenger in a car driving along a mountain road. An Associated Press report said the storm knocked out electricity to 79,000 people and water for an estimated 144,000 people in Puerto Rico.

   A tropical storm warning is in effect today for the Bahamas, but forecasters are predicting the storm will weaken to a tropical depression.