Necker Island, Caribbean (Good Morning America)– Necker Island Safe following Hurricane Irma: Sir Richard Branson’s son Sam took to Instagram Wednesday night, posting pictures and videos from the aftermath of Hurricane Irma on his father’s private island in the Caribbean. He was able to announce that “all humans on Necker Island are ok although a lot of buildings destroyed.”
The elder Brandon, who is the CEO of Virgin Group, had written on his company’s website earlier in the day that he and a group of people would remain on Necker Island for landfall and planned to retreat to a concrete wine cellar under his home when it happened.
Sam Branson wrote in one of his posts, “Very concerned for our friends and everyone on the neighboring islands and people in its path. Please don’t take this hurricane lightly if it is heading your way. If your building is not very solid, do find somewhere safe! Homes can be rebuilt but lives can’t.”
His photos show the destruction of other BVI islands like Tortola, where most of the buildings have been destroyed.
He also shared a heartbreaking video that he called “Beyond tragic. My deepest wishes go to all those affected.” Sam Branson seems to have been sourcing the videos and pictures from neighboring islands.
The Category 5 storm, with maximum sustained winds of 180 mph as of 5 a.m. Thursday morning, destroyed about 90 percent of structures and vehicles on the island of Barbuda yesterday afternoon and killed one person, according to Antigua and Barbuda Prime Minister Gaston Browne. At least eight people were killed and 21 more injured on St. Martin, according to French Interior Minister Gérard Collomb.
One person also died in Anguilla, according to Melissa Meade, director of disaster management in the British territory. Barbuda is about 196 miles away from the British Virgin Islands, where Necker Island is located. “Everyone is willing the eye of the storm to veer away from the BVI in these last few hours,” Richard Branson wrote before the storm hit Necker Island. “As I wrote yesterday, our main concern is safety, for everyone here and for all the people in the BVI and in the path of the hurricane.”
On Tuesday, Branson, 67, wrote that buildings on the island are “really strong” and have hurricane blinds, which enables them to “handle extreme weather pretty well.” This will be the third hurricane he has sustained on Necker Island, he wrote. On Tuesday, he and those with him played Perudo and slept together in two rooms.
“I haven’t had a sleepover quite like it since I was a kid,” he wrote. “Strangely, it’s a privilege to experience what is turning into possibly the strongest storm ever with such a great group of young people.”