Officials warn Puerto Rico could be without power for 6 months

Officials warn Puerto Rico could be without power for 6 months
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Puerto Rico could be without electricity for up to six months following Hurricane Maria, the mayor of the island’s largest city warns.

San Juan Mayor Carmen Yulín Cruz told MSNBC on Thursday that the U.S. territory's 3.5 million people are “looking at four to six months without electricity” after Maria, a Category 4 storm, swept across the island yesterday.

“The San Juan that we knew yesterday is no longer there,” she added.

A spokesman for Puerto Rico Gov. Ricardo Rosselló said Wednesday that “we are 100 percent without power” following Maria.

Officials said that the storm, the strongest to hit Puerto Rico in decades, devastated communities there, with more than 90 percent of homes destroyed in some areas.

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Emergency management officials declared an overnight curfew across Puerto Rico in the storm’s wake. President Trump issued a disaster declaration for the territory Wednesday night, a move that will speed up relief efforts following the storm.

“We have not experienced an event of this magnitude in our modern history,” Rosselló said Tuesday, adding that the Trump administration and the Federal Emergency Management Agency "have responded extraordinarily."

The White House said Wednesday that Trump “continues to direct all necessary federal resources to protect the people of the United States territories affected by Hurricane Maria and to support response and recovery efforts with respect to Hurricanes Harvey and Irma.”