Royal Navy ship heads for Cayman Islands to aid Hurricane Beryl relief efforts

A Royal Navy warship has set sail to the Cayman Islands to support Hurricane Beryl relief efforts after the powerful storm tore through islands in the south-east Caribbean, the Ministry of Defence (MoD) said.

The hurricane has wreaked damage in the region and killed at least seven people so far across Grenada, Carriacou, St Vincent and the Grenadines and Venezuela.

It was predicted to pass just south of the Cayman Islands overnight and, on Thursday morning, its eye was approximately 500 miles east-southeast of Tulum, Mexico.

HMS Trent, an offshore patrol vessel, is scheduled to arrive in the Cayman Islands this weekend with the crew set to help communities affected by flooding and storm damage.

The storm, previously rated Category 5, could bring winds of more than 155mph to the area, according to the MoD.

HMS Trent departed from Puerto Rico on Wednesday carrying bottled water, basic emergency supplies and other equipment, with more than 50 sailors on board.

Personnel include a team from 700X Naval Air Squadron who will be able to “conduct airborne reconnaissance”, and assess damage from above, to support members of 24 Commando Royal Engineers who are also on board, the MoD said.

A specialist Rapid Deployment Team has already travelled to the Eastern Caribbean to provide consular assistance to affected British nationals, the government department added.

The Prince and Princess of Wales are understood to be donating privately to Hurricane Beryl relief efforts.