Hurricane Irene cut a destructive path through the Caribbean on Monday, raking Puerto Rico with strong winds and rain and then skirting the Dominican Republic on a track that could carry it to the U.S. Southeast as a major storm by the end of the week.

Irene slashed directly across Puerto Rico, tearing up trees and knocking out power to more than a million people, then headed out to sea north of the Dominican Republic.

The first hurricane of the Atlantic season, Irene could grow into a Category 3 hurricane with winds of 115 mph over the Bahamas on Thursday, The Hurricane Center projected. And it may carry that force northwest along Florida’s Atlantic coast and toward a possible strike on South Carolina, though the forecasters warned that by the weekend, the storm’s path could vary significantly from the current projection.

For more on this story and other news, check out Tuesday's Daily Telegraph or log on to www.bdtonline.com

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