By Joel Alicea
As many of us know, a category five hurricane named Maria hit Puerto Rico on September 20th. A hurricane five is when the wind speed reaches up 156 miles per hour. Some sources estimate that the repairs could total up to 95 billion dollars as well as leading to over 900 deaths.
My grandfather lives in Puerto Rico and he said, “After the hurricane everything changed in the lives of Puerto Ricans because of the loss of houses and the loss of human life. Living on the island is difficult and the island remains dark because there is no electricity. The island is incapacitated because landslides damaged the roads and highways.” Although these repairs are expensive and important many people in P.R. have more immediate needs like fresh water, food, and gasoline. Many people and resources have been sent to Puerto Rico but the task is so large that recovery will take years.
According to the Wall Street Journal, although most people lost power, two out of ten people have power at this time. Two-thirds of hospitals currently have power. Some roads have been cleared but the roads to some communities have not. Helicopters are being used to drop supplies to those communities. FEMA is providing limited food, water, and medical supplies, but because of the lack of power and cell phone reception, many people don’t even know about it.
According to a CNN report, some of the things that need to be repaired are the infrastructure (buildings, roads and bridges) and basic necessities like electricity and plumbing. To this day people are still left without electricity and even without a house to sleep in throughout the night. What makes rebuilding harder is that the entire island needs to be updated using stronger materials for buildings, smarter and more reliable energy sources and roads that can withstand the climate of Puerto Rico. Even though the recovery efforts are progressing, there is still much left to rebuild.