A Weston man has flown to the Caribbean to help with hurricane relief

PUBLISHED: 07:37 14 September 2017 | UPDATED: 07:52 14 September 2017

Residents walk through wrecked streets and homes after the passage of Hurricane Irma. Photo by Carlos Giusti.

Residents walk through wrecked streets and homes after the passage of Hurricane Irma. Photo by Carlos Giusti.

A man from Weston-super-Mare has flown out to the Caribbean islands with a team of relief specialists to help people thousands of people who have been affected by Hurricane Irma.

Homes damaged by Hurricane Irma. Photo by Captain George Eatwell RM/MoD. Homes damaged by Hurricane Irma. Photo by Captain George Eatwell RM/MoD.

Mark Bradshaw is a volunteer with Team Rubicon UK which is sending people out to the islands where families and homes have been torn apart by the most powerful Atlantic storm on record.

Mark and his team will be helping with relief work in the Turks and Caicos Islands where 95 per cent of homes are believed to have been damaged.

Speaking on a Facebook live interview, he said: “We are trying really hard to get to where we can do some good. In the meantime we are doing a bit of preparation work. No time is wasted.”

Mark joined Team Rubicon last year and helped in the UK operations room when Hurricane Matthew hit Haiti.

Royal Marines from 40 Commando supporting the local community in the British Virgin Isles, following the devastation by Hurricane Irma. Photo by Captain George Eatwell RM/MoD. Royal Marines from 40 Commando supporting the local community in the British Virgin Isles, following the devastation by Hurricane Irma. Photo by Captain George Eatwell RM/MoD.

The veterans and experts in search and rescue, logistics and reconstruction will be assessing the destruction and helping with humanitarian efforts when they arrive on the islands.

The team is equipped with a water filtration unit, specialist technical search tools and communication equipment.

Hurricane Irma hit the Caribbean islands last week killing at last 28 people before making its way to Florida.

Winds of up to 185mph battered homes, destroying up to 95 per cent of buildings in some places and knocking out power and communications.

Mark Bradshaw. Mark Bradshaw.

The damage is estimated to cost billions of dollars and European nations have sent military reinforcements to help people who have lost everything.

Team Rubicon UK, which is based in Salisbury, is expecting to have around 20 staff in the region by the end of the week.

They will be working with other agencies and organisations on the ground to help with the relief effort.

The charity was set in 2015 and since then it has responded to 20 disasters in the UK and overseas.

Its veterans and civilian volunteers provide urgent, practical aid to those affected by natural disasters, either at home or abroad, matching the skills and experiences of military veterans with first responders, and medical professionals.

Team Rubicon has launched an emergency appeal and donations can be made at www.teamrubiconuk.org

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