NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Tropical Storm Dorian became a hurricane Wednesday and is clipping the same coast of Puerto Rico destroyed by Hurricane Maria two years ago.
The storm is expected to reach Category 3 status when it reaches the Florida coast this weekend. Floridians are gearing up early now that it appears to be in Dorian’s path.
But first, it’s Puerto Rico that has to worry about another hit, and the island’s politicians are once again getting blasted by President Donald Trump.
In Puerto Rico they are battening down the hatches, while the still recover from Hurricane Maria two years ago. The CEO of the island’s power company Jose Ortiz claims if the entire island loses power, it should be back up in just two weeks.
“We have to restore as quick as possible. It is not acceptable what happened last time. Many people wait for 11 months to get their power back,” said Ortiz.
New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo ordered New York State Power Authority to send a team to monitor the situation and work with authorities to assist with the emergency response. Cuomo also ordered 100 State Troopers to be on standby to to be deployed to the islands.
Since Maria, 30,000 homes are still covered with blue tarps and 1,000 roads remain impassable.
….And by the way, I’m the best thing that’s ever happened to Puerto Rico!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 28, 2019
“Puerto Rico is one of the most corrupt places on earth. Their political system is broken and their politicians are either Incompetent or Corrupt. Congress approved Billions of Dollars last time, more than anyplace else has ever gotten, and it is sent to Crooked Pols. No good! And by the way, I’m the best thing that’s ever happened to Puerto Rico,” Trump wrote on Twitter.
The mayor of San Juan fired back.
“Will his lies end? Will that ever end? Will his racism and vindictive behavior towards the people of Puerto Rico ever end? As you have said, this is not how a president behaves,” said Mayor Carmen Yulin Cruz.
On Tuesday, Gov. Wanda Vazquez of Puerto Rico declared a state of emergency ahead of the storm, and Trump approved federal assistance, CBS2’s Valerie Castro reports.
The lasting effects of Hurricane Maria from 2017 are still felt and seen as rebuilding continues in some of the hardest-hit areas of the island. Sandbags are being prepped and island residents are filling shopping carts with bottled water, batteries, generators and other supplies.
The Roberto Clemente Colosseum in San Juan will be opened as a shelter during the storm.
In the meanwhile, water is flying off the shelves in South Florida. Some people are hitting the stores days before a possible hit from Dorian.
“I’m not that concerned but I think it’s better to be safe than sorry,” said Miami Shores resident Jamie Arden. “I’d rather be here now before it gets too crazy.”
“So everybody’s ordering water. I just bought three cases of water, 36 bottles of Gatorade,” said Fort Lauderdale resident Michelle Fayter.
“Our message to folks who have just been, you know what we always do during hurricane season, just have a plan. Be ready and listen,” said Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis.
On Tuesday, President Trump claimed that Congress approved $92 billion for Puerto Rico after Maria’s devastation. Congress has only allocated $43 billion. Less than $14 billion from that reached the island.
People with family and loved ones in the area possibly affected by the storm should take note of the following hurricane resources in case the storm escalates and makes landfall.
Ready.Gov Hurricane Toolkit
- Preparedness Guide
- How To Create An Emergency Communication Plan
- Emergency Planning For Dogs, Cats & Other Pets
- Emergency Supplies & Disaster Kit Shopping List
- Flood Insurance Information
Resources In Puerto Rico
- Puerto Rico Federal Affairs Administration
- Map Of Federal Affairs Regional Offices
- FEMA Locating Loved Ones Registry
- American Red Cross Safe & Well Registry
- Red Cross Guide To Puerto Rico Resources
- Puerto Rico Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster (VOAD)
Resources In The Dominican Republic
- U.S. Embassy in the Dominican Republic Hurricane and Disaster Preparedness (English)
- U.S. Embassy in the Dominican Republic Hurricane and Disaster Preparedness (Spanish)
- Dominican Emergency Operations Center (Centro de Operaciones de Emergencias) (Spanish only)
- Dominican National Office of Meteorology (Oficina Nacional de Meteorologia) (Spanish only)