By Staff Reporter, EnStarz | Aug 26, 2012 03:24 PM EDT
Tropical Storm Isaac's track has seen it pass by Haiti and the Dominican Republic as it continues to strengthen close to hurricane power. As it heads towards the Florida Keys more deaths have been reported bringing the total death toll related to Isaac to nine.
Two more deaths were reported Sunday from the Dominican Republic, according to Dominican police. According to reports the two men were swept away as flooded rivers burst their banks due to the extensive rainfall hitting the region from Isaac.
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Those two deaths, added to the seven deaths reported from Haiti, mean nine so far have died. One of the deaths was of Pedro Peralta, a former mayor in Villa Altagracia, a town northwest of Santo Domingo.
So far 14,000 people have fled their homes in Haiti due to the extensive flooding, and another 13,500 people are living in temporary shelters, according to the Civil Protection Office.
According to authorities more than 250 houses have been damaged in Haiti, with more than a dozen destroyed completely.
Meanwhile Isaac has forced the cancellation of the first day of the Republican National Convention scheduled for Monday in Tampa, Florida.
The event is scheduled to officially name Mitt Romney as the GOP presidential nominee, but the party will now have to wait a little longer as health and safety of delegates has been put first.
The National Hurricane Center has said Isaac is not going to slam Tampa directly, but the storm is predicted to significantly lash the region with strong winds and heavy rainfall on Monday.
Officials have now thought it best to delay the convention; they plan to now convene the event briefly then take recess until Tuesday afternoon, when the worst of the storm is predicted to have passed through.
Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus issued a statement saying that Monday's events had been canceled due to "severe transportation difficulties due to sustained wind and rain."
He said, "Due to the severe weather reports for the Tampa Bay area, the Republican National Convention will convene on Monday August 27th and immediately recess until Tuesday afternoon, August 28th, exact time to follow. Our first priority is ensuring the safety of delegates, alternates, guests, members of the media attending the Republican National Convention, and citizens of the Tampa Bay area."
Tropical Storm Isaac has been bashing the north central coast of Cuba overnight on early Sunday morning, and will continue to move towards the Florida Keys later on Sunday evening or night.
By early Monday Isaac's path will lead it to the southeast of the Gulf of Mexico by early Monday, which will significantly strengthen the storm's power.
Experts have predicted that the storm will hit hurricane strength sometime in the coming 24 to 48 hours with winds increasing to between 70 to 100 mph.
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