Bahamian Hurricane Survivors Without US Visas Kicked Off Rescue Ship To Florida

People arrive in West Palm Beach, Florida after evacuating the hurricane-stricken Bahamas. (Photo: Saul Martinez/Getty Images)

Bahamians who were evacuating after Hurricane Dorian were ordered to get off a rescue ship to Florida if they didn’t have a U.S. visa on Sunday.

Survivors of the category 5 hurricane that decimated the Bahamas embarked upon a ferry Sunday at Freeport, Bahamas, which would take them to West Palm Beach, Florida for food and shelter.

But according to a video posted by WSVN 7 News reporter Brian Entin, the ship operator told passengers who didn’t have a U.S. visa to disembark.

“CBP was notified of a vessel preparing to embark an unknown number of passengers in Freeport and requested that the operator of the vessel coordinate with U.S. and Bahamian government officials in Nassau before departing the Bahamas,” a Customs and Border Patrol spokesperson said in an emailed statement to TPM.

“Everyone who arrives to the United States from another country must present themselves to a CBP officer for inspection at an official CBP Port of Entry,” the spokesperson continued. “All persons must possess valid identity and travel documents.”

The death toll following the devastating hurricane is currently at 43, and about 70,000 people have been displaced after the storm destroyed their homes.

Dear Reader,

When we asked recently what makes TPM different from other outlets, readers cited factors like honesty, curiosity, transparency, and our vibrant community. They also pointed to our ability to report on important stories and trends long before they are picked up by mainstream outlets; our ability to contextualize information within the arc of history; and our focus on the real-world consequences of the news.

Our unique approach to reporting and presenting the news, however, wouldn’t be possible without our readers’ support. That’s not just marketing speak, it’s true: our work would literally not be possible without readers deciding to become members. Not only does member support account for more than 80% of TPM’s revenue, our members have helped us build an engaged and informed community. Many of our best stories were born from reader tips and valuable member feedback.

We do what other news outlets can’t or won’t do because our members’ support gives us real independence.

If you enjoy reading TPM and value what we do, become a member today.

TPM Staff
Latest News
Masthead Masthead
Founder & Editor-in-Chief:
Executive Editor:
Managing Editor:
Associate Editor:
Investigations Desk:
Director of Audience:
Editor at Large:
General Counsel:
Head of Product:
Director of Technology:
Associate Publisher:
Front End Developer:
Senior Designer: