Puerto Rico is staring down the barrel of a major Category 5 hurricane. Maria has quickly strengthened over the past 48 hours to a monster storm that is possibly the worst one that Puerto Rico has seen since 1928. Maria is coming on the heels of Hurricane Irma, a strong storm that devastated the Caribbean only a little over a week ago.
One of the islands that is in the path of the storm is Dominica. There are only 72,000 people on the island. However, these are people who will still feel the impacts from the storm. The hurricane will pose a significant threat to the Virgin Islands as early as Tuesday night with wind speeds that will likely be over 130 miles per hour. Puerto Rico didn’t see many of the impacts from Irma when she brushed by the area. However, Maria looks like she has her eyewall set for a direct impact on the island. There were 1 million people who lost power during Irma with that number increasing when Maria makes landfall.
Rain amounts with Hurricane Maria could top about 12 inches. The storm surge will likely be very high and even deadly if there are people who can’t get out of harm’s way. Irma is responsible for the deaths of three people in Puerto Rico. There are 6,000 people who don’t have water to drink on the island and thousands who are still without power. This hurricane comes at a time when the supplies are limited on the island and when there simply isn’t a lot of energy left from the people who live there. The Federal Emergency Management Agency has resources in place to send to Puerto Rico once it’s safe to do so including generators, food, and bottles of clean drinking water. The goal is to save the people who are on the island and maintain order.