- Created: Friday, 27 October 2017 09:53
- Written by Charles Chinweizu
On 20 September Category 4 Hurricane Maria hit the US colony of Puerto Rico destroying the power grid, all agriculture and non-concrete structures. Hurricanes Irma and Maria, the tenth worst Atlantic hurricane, caused catastrophic damage to infrastructure, and hundreds of deaths across the Caribbean. Officially 48 people were killed but the real death toll is probably 10 times that, closer to 450 people, according to a report by Eliza Barclay (Vox.com). There are over 25 sites with hazardous waste throughout the island, which has now spread due to flooding.
One month later, three million people are still without electricity - 80% of the population. Basic supplies like food and water in some areas are in short supply. More than a third of households are still without reliable drinking water, affecting roughly one million people. It could take up to 6 months to restore services. There is little access to cellular, cable, and Internet service.