CHARLOTTE AMALIE, St. Thomas -- Recurrent heavy rains in the past week in the eastern Caribbean, particularly in the U.S. Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico, have caused mudslides, road damage, numerous flash floods and waterlogged crops.

An early government estimate put the damages at more than $20 million in the U.S.V.I., particularly for beach and shoreline erosion. Several hotels, including Marriott Frenchman's Reef on St. Thomas and the Westin St. John, had some damage to resort facilities.

More than 11 inches of rain was measured on St. Croix last week where the normal rainfall is about six inches for the entire month of November.

Meanwhile, more than 25 inches fell in the hilly terrain of eastern Puerto Rico. No hotel damage has been reported from the rain that fell on the island and hotel occupancy remains steady at about 80%. None of the tourism areas have been affected by the damage to roads, bridges, agriculture and homes in other areas of the island.

Weather and marine conditions in the Caribbean are expected to improve this week.

To contact reporter Gay Nagle Myers, send e-mail to [email protected].

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