A TREE surgeon from Ebbw Vale has described the destruction caused by two hurricanes as “biblical” while helping the aid effort in the Caribbean.

Troy Elliot, 46, of Holland Drive flew out to Dominica with the Disaster Arborist Response Team (DART) International UK, a volunteer humanitarian organisation just over a week ago.

Hurricane Irma, ranked as a category five weather event, is believed to have killed 124 people between August 30 and September 16.

It was followed by Hurricane Maria, another category five storm, which is still ongoing and has killed 68 people to date, including 30 in Dominica.

“The locals have lost everything and the devastation can only be described as 'biblical',” said Mr Elliot.

“However they want to start rebuilding their island and have made a massive effort over the past two days in doing so.

“There is still no water, electricity or sanitation on the island however in the capital you can see the utility companies working around the clock to sort this out.”

The 46-year-old has worked as an tree surgeon for four years but only started volunteering with the organisations six months ago, with this being is first overseas deployment.

“We were originally due to deploy to the Caribbean in response to Hurricane Irma but our flight was on the day Hurricane Maria hit, as a result plans were made for us to fly into Barbados then onto Dominica,” said Mr Elliot.

“We have been in Dominica eight days now. Our first four days were spent on the north of the island working with the Dominican police out of Melville Hall airport clearing roads in the area so aid can be distributed.

“Last Friday we moved down to Roseau as directed by the Dominican foreign minister and we have been clearing roads of tree debris and land slides since.

“On Sunday we managed to clear the only road to Soufriere in the south which had been closed since the hurricane allowing aid to get into the area.”

The tree surgeon combines his role with the organisation by working for EOS Contracting by covering Worcestershire for Western Power Distribution.

“We are currently staying at the national cricket stadium in Roseau sleeping in hammocks, eating food we brought out with us, drinking purified water and bathing in local rivers but we are making a difference to the locals so it’s worth it,” added Mr Elliot.

For details on the organisation, or how to support DART, go to dartinternational.co.uk or facebook.com/DARTInternationalUK/.