H urricane Dorian, one of the most powerful Atlantic storms on record, hovered over the Bahamas on Monday, killing at least five people and levelling houses.
The storm is expected to approach dangerously close to the southeastern coast of the US, according to forecasters, who have warned it could inflict damage from Florida to Virginia and beyond.
Forecasters at the National Hurricane Center moved the storm's "cone of uncertainty" slightly eastward on Monday, but they stressed a minor change could see Dorian head back to the mainland.
The storm, since reduced to a Category four, parked itself over the Bahamas after making landfall in Grand Bahama Island on Sunday night after tearing through the Abaco Islands, according to the NHC.
Hubert Minnis, Prime Minister of the Bahamas, said the Abaco Islands, which on Sunday received the full brunt of Dorian, had been seriously damaged and said police confirmed five deaths in Abaco.
"Our focus right now is search, rescue and recovery," Mr Minnis told reporters at a news conference. "I ask for your prayers for those in affected areas and for our first responders."