A woman embraces her mother after traveling from San Juan to Hayales de Coamo to check on her. Telephone lines are down across the island.
A Category 4 hurricane battered Puerto Rico on September 20, in what Gov. Ricardo Rosselló called a “humanitarian disaster involving 3.4 million U.S. citizens.” These U.S. citizens still don't have power, and many lack access to clean water to drink or bathe in.
Eighty percent of the island’s power transmission lines were knocked out by the storm, as reported by the Associated Press, and nearly all of their 1.57 million electricity customers were still without power as of Wednesday. (See more photos of Maria's destruction.)
Continued food shortages on the island might be a reality, and are likely to get worse, as Hurricane Maria decimated 80 percent of the crop value on the island—amounting to a loss of $780 million.
Meanwhile, thousands of shipping containers of much-needed food, fuel, and medical supplies are stuck at San Juan’s port, reports USA Today. “Now is not the time for memos, now is the time for action, now is the time for justice, now is the time to get life-supporting supplies into people’s hands,” says San Juan Mayor Carmen Yulin Cruz. (Learn more about why this hurricane season has been so catastrophic.)