Hurricane Sandy has left a trail of destruction in Cuba and was heading towards the Bahamas carrying rain and wind of 165 km/h.
No casualties have so far been reported in Cuba where the storm felled trees and damaged buildings.
Much of the destruction was in the historic city of Santiago, while in Guantanamo, telephone poles were toppled and buildings damaged.
The category two storm emerged off Cuba's north-east coast on Thursday and was due to strike islands in the southern Bahamas, the BBC reported.
Schools and offices are closed, and residents in southern Ragged Island have already reported damaging winds.
On Wednesday, one man died as Sandy swept over Jamaica.
Meanwhile, the east coast of the US state of Florida - from Ocean Reef to Flagler Beach - has been placed on tropical storm watch.