At least 69 people were killed across the Caribbean as Hurricane Matthew pounded its way through Haiti and the Bahamas to Florida, Reuters reported on Thursday. Officials said the toll in Haiti, which has suffered the worst damage in the disaster, has risen to 65, and the destruction has forced authorities to postpone the country's presidential election, which was scheduled for October 9.

Authorities in the American states of Florida, Georgia and South Carolina have issued evacuation warnings that affect two million people, BBC reported. Officials estimate that around 10,000 people in Haiti have taken refuge in shelters, while residents of regions that fall in the path of the storm are stocking up on fuel and food. Several American airlines have cancelled flights, while some schools and government offices remain shut.

Earlier, four people were killed in neighboring Dominican Republic. A United Nations official had referred to the devastation caused by the hurricane as the "largest humanitarian event" since the 2010 earthquake in Haiti. Hurricane Matthew is believed to be the most powerful storm of its kind to strike the Caribbean since Hurricane Felix in 2007. Designated as a Category 3 storm, the hurricane has damaged communication and road links in Haiti, an impoverished and flood-prone country.