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Puerto Rico
Old 09-25-2017, 08:58 AM   #1
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Puerto Rico

I am a little confused.
Puerto Rico, a US territory with US (non voting) citizens, has a population of well over 3 million people.
If the "news" is correct, it appears that there is no power system on the Island, and the water system is compromised. Again... depending on whether the information is correct, it appears that both systems may take weeks, if not months to correct.
Other sources indicate that the isalnd food supply, if not entirely wiped out, will also take months if not years to recover.
Already, an almost insolvent government, seems overwhelmed in recovery efforts.

Trying to catch up on what's happening, today's news, among other things, indicate so many sidelights that the scope of the disaster seems (to me) to being lessened.. Not that saving 180 homeless dogs, or emergency supplies of 1.6 million gallons of water and 23,000 sleeping bags is not important, but... with grocery store closed, and no replenishment of the necessities of life in the offing, the outlook seems sad.

One "worst case" scenario has millions starving, beset by disease and possible outbreaks of terrible epidemics. At present, any attempts to help are being frustrated by the lack of communications.

There are at this point US government rules about what foodstuffs can be imported, and from whom. Hopefully these rules will be lessened. (Jones Act).

Obviously this will soon regain more attention, and hopefully massive aid attempts will save lives. Hard to deal with so many catastrophes at one time... Texas, Florida, Mexico. Many millions of people have already had their lives changed forever, still, the total number of deaths are counted in the thousands... Without a huge recovery effort, I wonder if the Puerto Rico fatalities might reach the many thousands, hundreds of thousands, or maybe millions of people who will be affected forever.

I only hope that our nation can come together to avert this crisis.
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Old 09-25-2017, 09:23 AM   #2
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Truly sad for all those victims. And yeah, PR without water, power, food, routine access to medical care etc, may quickly become a malarial swamp instead of an island paradise. Let's hope both the prayers and the material support keep pouring in for all those impacted.
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Old 09-25-2017, 10:24 AM   #3
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If they don't get water and food quickly, I can see that they will catch a boat/plane to FL.
Of course since flights are extremely limited, this is not going to work for more than a few thousand per day.
Even now they are still just getting to some area's of the island as all roads are blocked/flooded.

This could easily turn into a gigantic catastrophic disaster.
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Old 09-25-2017, 10:26 AM   #4
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If they don't get water and food quickly, I can see that they will catch a boat/plane to FL.
Of course since flights are extremely limited, this is not going to work for more than a few thousand per day.
Even now they are still just getting to some area's of the island as all roads are blocked/flooded.

This could easily turn into a gigantic catastrophic disaster.
If the demand is there the cruise industry will run a San Juan Miami shuttle for about an airline price, (they are doing one run this weekend for 2k folks)
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Old 09-25-2017, 11:34 AM   #5
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I hope that the folks who can afford it, will be able to evacuate. Unfortunately this will not be a possibility for the vast majority of people where the average household income is less than $20,000, compared to the US HH income of nearly $57K. Even if evacuation were to be free, moving three million, four hundred thousand people would be a formidable task.

BTW... Puerto /rico has no indigenous Army, so protection during the crisis, is currently dependent on police. (US is responsible for national defense).

Also, FWIW, 80% of the population has access to the internet, which is provided by submarine cables to the U.S. and intelsat. The problem of course is electricity.

Seems that a major recovery plan should be in the works, but thusfar, still very little information from the federal government, or the major emergency operations.

Yes.. I know there are 14 million people who are at risk for starvation in Yemen, and that we can't fix the whole world, but whether we like it or not, the problems of Puerto Rico are our United States' problems (Puerto Ricans are US citizens). Lets hope we can help.

(edited to note that 4000 US Army Reservists have been dispatched to help the island)
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Old 09-25-2017, 01:39 PM   #6
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Besides the Red Cross, what are other organizations providing relief in PR that I should make donations to?
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Old 09-25-2017, 02:07 PM   #7
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I find it interesting, after watching some episodes of Ken Burn's Vietnam war series and noticing how the Politicians lied and hid information from the public, that there is hardly any news about PR.

Yes I can google it, but until I read this thread, I never really thought there would be 3 Million people there, yes call me stupid, but that is a huge number, yet the news seems pretty absent about it.
More on the NFL kneeling.

Maybe everything is really sunny and fine. ?
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Old 09-25-2017, 02:19 PM   #8
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Just because something isn't reported does not mean it isn't worthy of our attention, and what is reported is often a waste of electrons or paper. This is a real calamity for the people of Puerto Rico, along with those in Dominica, St Martin, Barbuda, Antigua, and many on the US and British Virgin Islands. Most have lost everything.
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Old 09-25-2017, 02:20 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by meierlde View Post
If the demand is there the cruise industry will run a San Juan Miami shuttle for about an airline price, (they are doing one run this weekend for 2k folks)
That could be harder than thought from PR:

https://www.usatoday.com/story/trave...ria/685467001/

"Both of the major lines that operate cruises out of San Juan, Royal Caribbean and Carnival, have canceled this week's sailings out of the city. Carnival also has canceled trips out of San Juan scheduled to start on Oct. 1 and Oct. 8. In addition, three Florida-based ships that were scheduled to visit San Juan this week have been re-routed to other ports. Carnival said late Friday that its terminal in San Juan sustained extensive damage from Maria that will takes weeks to repair. "
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Old 09-25-2017, 02:24 PM   #10
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They didnt even begin repairs till today, they spent the last week surveying the damage.
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Old 09-25-2017, 02:28 PM   #11
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Besides the Red Cross, what are other organizations providing relief in PR that I should make donations to?
Here are a couple:
Home | Unidos Por Puerto Rico
United for Puerto Rico is an initiative brought forth by the First lady of Puerto Rico, Beatriz Rosselló in collaboration with the private sector, with the purpose of providing aid and support to those affected in Puerto Rico by the passage of Hurricane Irma and Hurricane María.

https://secure.americares.org/site/D...donation=form1
Donate to provide emergency medicine, supplies and medical outreach as Americares responds to the urgent needs of people already devastated by Hurricane Irma who are now caught in Hurricane Maria’s destructive path.
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Old 09-25-2017, 02:44 PM   #12
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That could be harder than thought from PR:

https://www.usatoday.com/story/trave...ria/685467001/

"Both of the major lines that operate cruises out of San Juan, Royal Caribbean and Carnival, have canceled this week's sailings out of the city. Carnival also has canceled trips out of San Juan scheduled to start on Oct. 1 and Oct. 8. In addition, three Florida-based ships that were scheduled to visit San Juan this week have been re-routed to other ports. Carnival said late Friday that its terminal in San Juan sustained extensive damage from Maria that will takes weeks to repair. "
Note that a large part of the cancelation is that there could not be any shore excursions with no power. Also trips out of San Juan mean bringing more people into a no power situation. Even if the docks were out of order they could transfer folks by small boats. Essentially the boat comes to San Juan empty and fills up and sails back to Miami full and repeats. So it is similar to what happened between Irma and Maria, where ships took folks from St Thomas to San Juan.
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Old 09-25-2017, 03:07 PM   #13
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The government can (and probably will) set up refugee camps in Puerto Rico. Basically, it is a logistics problem. They don't need heat nor air conditioning for the most part, so issuing tents for those that want them plus daily rations of food and water will go a long ways to keeping people alive.

People don't starve to death until maybe 3 weeks of no food. And they can go without water for 3 days or more. The reality is that people can drink contaminated water and not die. If they get sick, then they can be treated. It seems there is probably plenty of freshwater around that can be drunk if disinfected. And disinfection is relatively easy with filters and drugs. One doesn't need to boil water anymore to disinfect it if one has other methods.

But think about being away from a major distribution point in P.R. without any electricity and no communication to the outside world. You don't know if help is coming or not. Do you send out a scouting party towards a main town? Or do you just wait? Do you start to move debris and make minor repairs to your living space?

The folks who have some money and family off the island will probably send the women and children away. The others are trapped.

Of course, disabled, infirm, and sick people have got to get away.
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Old 09-25-2017, 03:21 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cathy63 View Post
Here are a couple:
Home | Unidos Por Puerto Rico
United for Puerto Rico is an initiative brought forth by the First lady of Puerto Rico, Beatriz Rosselló in collaboration with the private sector, with the purpose of providing aid and support to those affected in Puerto Rico by the passage of Hurricane Irma and Hurricane María.

https://secure.americares.org/site/D...donation=form1
Donate to provide emergency medicine, supplies and medical outreach as Americares responds to the urgent needs of people already devastated by Hurricane Irma who are now caught in Hurricane Maria’s destructive path.
Thanks.

When I get back into town and have a better Internet connection, will check the above out.
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Old 09-25-2017, 05:27 PM   #15
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For communications if one knows a ham radio operator, the operator may be able to relay a welfare message to a Ham on the mainland. This is the way coms in disasters was done in the good old days, and even today there is one Ham on Dominica whose transmissions are being streamed on you tube. BTW if worried about this a Ham radio license no longer requires code, and if you get at least a general license you can communicate world wide.
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Old 09-25-2017, 05:39 PM   #16
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It has been a while since the hurricanes came through, and unless I am missing it I have not heard much about any disasters. I suspect that all will be fine, and people will have plenty to eat and drink.

Since the people there are US Citizens, they are entitled to many of the same benefits that other hurricane victims have right here on the mainland. They can come to the USA and resettle most anywhere. They can stay in place and continue to receive the benefits they were getting before the storm. I do not think there will be any shortage of money coming from government sources.

It's probably miserable there, but likely still a tropical island.
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Old 09-25-2017, 05:40 PM   #17
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I am surprised there was not more solar power in Puerto Rico. I have to think with no access to hydro or nuclear plants that their electricity costs are sky high and solar being like $0.35 a watt now for panels...
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Old 09-25-2017, 05:51 PM   #18
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I am surprised there was not more solar power in Puerto Rico. I have to think with no access to hydro or nuclear plants that their electricity costs are sky high and solar being like $0.35 a watt now for panels...
I've been there many times on business. Unless you are in San Juan, the rest of the island is small towns and villages that are one step above third world. Plus, industry (tuna canning, chemicals, etc) is in the tank. If it wasn't for tourism, the island would be worse off.
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Old 09-25-2017, 05:57 PM   #19
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Note the average household income in PR is 19k while in the rest of the US it is 55k.
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Old 09-25-2017, 06:06 PM   #20
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Is land really cheap there or something? I don't understand why people would stay when they are US citizens and free to work and settle in any of the 50 states.
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