Jeffrey Roberts lifted a mustard-yellow curtain from the ground as he looked for passports and other documents at the site where his family’s home once stood in Grand Bahama.

He then moved the cloth aside, picked up a pair of old, rusty pliers, and continued his search.

“We got to take what God gives us,” Roberts said in reference to tropical storm Humberto, which narrowly missed the island over the weekend as it continued on its northward trajectory well offshore of Florida’s east coast.

By early Sunday morning, the U.S. National Hurricane Center said the storm was about 220 kilometres north of Great Abaco Island and was moving at 11 km/h north-northwest with maximum sustained winds of 97 km/h. Weather forecasters said it would likely become a hurricane by Sunday night, but would remain far from the Bahamas and the U.S. coast by the time it has intensified to that strength.

The storm briefly shuttered a couple of small airports, sent people in damaged homes to seek shelter and threatened to interrupt the distribution of sorely needed supplies including food and water.

As the storm barely passed the northern Bahamas, however, Roberts and others were already returning to the task at hand: resuming their cleanup and recovery efforts in communities devastated by Hurricane Dorian two weeks ago.

Guterres calls Dorian ‘Category Hell’

On Saturday, UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres visited the island of Great Abaco to support humanitarian efforts in the wake of the storm that left thousands in need of food, water and shelter.

“Hurricane Dorian has been classified as Category 5. I think it’s Category Hell,” said the secretary general, adding he was horrified by the “level of systematic devastation.”

The death toll from the hurricane stands at 50 and the number of missing at an alarming 1,300 people, although officials caution the list is preliminary and many people could just be unable to connect with loved ones.

The Canadian government has said it might consider recalling its Canadian Armed Forces crew deployed for humanitarian relief if the impending storm worsens.

Priest’s mass vestments hang in the rubble of a destroyed house by Hurricane Dorian in Pelican Point, Grand Bahama, Bahamas, on Saturday. (The Associated Press)

“The safety of our aircrew and aircraft is always a priority,” said spokesperson Alexia Croizer.

eanwhile, the Canadian government said it might consider recalling its Canadian Armed Forces crew deployed for humanitarian relief if the impending storm worsens.

“The safety of our aircrew and aircraft is always a priority,” said spokesperson Alexia Croizer.