Hurricane Fiona is the first major hurricane in the Atlantic this season, strengthening to a Category 4 storm after battering Puerto Rico, the Dominican Republic and the Turks and Caicos. The storm is still wreaking havoc and left over a million people desperate for water.
Major flooding, destroyed buildings, and damaged infrastructure left millions without power or running water, and disaster-stricken communities are struggling to recover.
According to AP. Three days after Hurricane Fiona hit Puerto Rico, more than half a million people were still without water, and many spent long hours filling water jugs from water trucks or scooping water from mountain runoff.
Once again, storms had left many on the island without basic services.
Tropical storm Fiona dumped around two feet of rain on parts of Puerto Rico before it swept east towards Dominica and the Turks and Caicos Islands. Take a look at this insane footage from the storm.
Here is the moment floods swept away an entire bridge.
The storm caused havoc on Puerto Rico’s electrical grid, which had been patched but never fully rebuilt after Maria caused a 11-month blackout.
The situation is so dire that President Biden declared the situation an emergency.
As reported by Politico. President Joe Biden declared Puerto Rico a major disaster on Wednesday, unlocking additional federal assistance.
Two days after Fiona decimated the island’s power grid and pelted it with heavy rainfall, Gov. Pedro Pierluisi had requested an expedited declaration from the Biden administration.
A declaration of emergency was approved by Biden on Sunday. As a result of the major disaster declaration, FEMA has the ability to directly assist individuals in covering the costs of temporary housing, home repairs, and other programs that will assist individuals and businesses recover from the storm.
Puerto Rico now has access to federal funds for debris removal, emergency protective measures, and hazard mitigation.
Schumer asked FEMA’s administrator to prepare for the federal government to cover all costs for emergency protective services in Puerto Rico rather than requiring the territory to pay anything.
On Tuesday, Schumer said Puerto Rico’s government lacks the money to lay it out, and the people are suffering.
As a result of Fiona, AccuWeather projects Puerto Rico’s economic impact will be $10 billion, equal to 10 percent of its GDP, including job losses and tourism losses.
Puerto Rico is yet again the victim of another devastating storm. The situation looks dire and we are praying for the people affected. Hopefully the FEMA assistance is distributed fast so the people of Puerto Rico remain safe.
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