Richard Branson survives hurricane in island wine cellar

Aid on way to Irma-battered islands as death toll rises

Billionaire entrepreneur Richard Branson posted photos on social media of the destruction that Hurricane Irma left on his private island in the Caribbean, pointing to climate change as a cause of large, unpredictable natural disasters, CNBC reported.

He also appealed to the British government to establish a "disaster recovery Marshall Plan" for the BVI and other Caribbean islands, a reference to the operation launched by the U.S. to rebuild western Europe after World War II. We have spent the past two days visiting team members who live on Virgin Gorda and as many people as possible, distributing aid, water and supplies.

"Necker damage huge, but BVI #Irma story is not about Necker - about 1000s of people who've lost homes & livelihoods", he captioned another, which showed downed palm trees and parts of the home strewn about the yard. But we are very fortunate to have a strong cellar built into Necker's Great House and were very lucky all of our teams who stayed on (the) island during the storm are safe and well.

His son, Sam, even launched relief efforts. In a blog post on www.virgin.com, he said the region needed a "Disaster Recovery Marshall Plan" to aid in recovery and the long-term revitalization of its economy - a reference to the multibillion-dollar U.S. program that helped rebuild Western European after the devastation of World War Two.

"Communications in and out of the BVI are still mostly down, but we have a satellite phone working to share updates".

He added: "The boats are piled up like match sticks in the harbour".

Branson said some of the Virgin Atlantic fleet would be used to supplies and emergency workers to areas affected by the storm.

Richard Branson was among the thousands of individuals caught in the pummeling wind and rain of Hurricane Irma over the weekend.

Geoffrey Scott Baker said his daughter, Amy Brown, had been ignored.

But speaking on the BBC, Mr Johnson defended the government's actions.

Dutch King Willem-Alexander was due to visit the Dutch side of Saint Martin on Monday, the palace said in a statement.

Mr Johnson said that 50 police officers were flying to the UK's overseas territories to help restore order.

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