Hurricane Felix has blown its last gasp on the shores of Central America, but not before claiming four lives in Nicaragua, and wreaking havoc in the port of Puerto Cabezas. The tempest made landfall as a Category Five hurricane, the strongest possible. But as it chewed through trees and buildings, its fearsome winds of 260 km per hour were tamed. Hurricane Felix followed hot on the heels of another Category Five storm, Hurricane Dean, which tracked a more northerly path last month, killing 27 people.
It is the first time on record that two maximum strength Atlantic hurricanes have hit land in the same season. But although Felix has now been downgraded to a tropical storm, the risk is not over. It is dumping vast quantities of rain, threatening deadly mudslides in Honduras and Guatemala. Officials are warning of rivers breaking their banks, and roads being damaged.