Rossello told CNN the island is lacking communications and the preliminary assessment at this point is 13 fatalities.
They just want to know if mom and dad are okay. “All Areas surrounding the Guajataca River should evacuate NOW”.
“Puerto Rico has endured an horrific ordeal and we are lucky to have a friend like Governor Cuomo and New York State who we share a close bond and deep history with”.
“It’s heart-wrenching to watch the news images and know that our parents and loved ones are there”, said Necy. Now, almost all 3.4 million people on the island are sitting in the dark amid widespread pessimism about the future of this tropical US territory and whether they should expect much help.
Maria knocked the power out to the entire island earlier this week.
San Juan resident Heidi Roque, 21, said the storm pulverized her home, shattering windows and mangling fences.
A hurricane warning was issued for the Turks and Caicos islands, as the eye of the category three storm approached the British overseas territory, the US National Hurricane Centre (NHC) said. “We are sending requested resources and personnel to help the island rebuild, and we stand shoulder to shoulder with the Puerto Rican community in their time of need”.
As of 11 p.m. ET, Maria had weakened to a Category 2 hurricane with maximum sustained wind of 110 miles per hour, according to the National Hurricane Center.
The exodus from the island has included so many doctors it can be hard to find a specialist.
“Puerto Rico has endured a horrific ordeal”, Rossello lamented. The territory’s $73bn debt crisis has left agencies like the state power company broke.
A failing dam prompted emergency evacuations of two towns in northwestern Puerto Rico on Friday.
“Some transmission structures collapsed”, Rossello said, adding that there was no severe damage to electric plants. Sailors and marines in the region were conducting damage assessment flights, beach assessments and evacuating patients from a hospital in the U.S. Virgin Islands. If everyone leaves, what are we going to do? “With all the pros and the cons, I will stay here”, the 68-year-old said, and then paused. “There is tremendous damage on the island”, said William Booher, director of public affairs for FEMA. “I might have a different response tomorrow”.
Booher said there was no shift in strategy and that “we continually evaluate how we can get that messaging out”. The state is also sending drinking water, ready-to-eat meals, electrical generators and other supplies.