Puerto Rico aid supplies trapped at San Juan port: report

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A large amount of aid for Puerto Rico is reportedly untouched at the Port of San Juan, CNN reported Thursday.

A majority of the 9,500 containers of supplies at the port have not been moved due to a lack of truck drivers, a fuel shortage and damaged infrastructure after Hurricane Maria devastated the island.

Only 20 percent of truck drivers on the U.S. territory have reported back to work after the hurricane, making it difficult to deliver the food, water and medical supplies, a representative for Puerto Rican Gov. Ricardo Rosselló told CNN.

Rosselló said it’s been difficult to contact drivers due to downed cell service.

{mosads}Nearly all of the island is without power after Puerto Rico was hit by two major hurricanes in the last month. The island could be without power for six months, officials estimate.

To help, the White House announced earlier Thursday that President Trump has agreed to waive the Jones Act, temporarily lifting shipping restrictions on Puerto Rico, enabling the population of over 3.4 million to receive more aid.

The 10-day waiver from the shipping law — which requires American-made and -operated vessels to transport cargo between U.S. ports — goes into effect immediately.

Lawmakers in Congress since Monday have been pushing for a one-year waiver from the rules to help speed up deliveries of food, fuel and other critical supplies to the territory.  

But the waiver is likely to only help somewhat, as containers of supplies still need to be delivered from the island’s ports.

Shipping company Crowley said it was only able to dispatch about 120 of 3,000 supply-filled containers it had delivered to the island due to lack of truck drivers and fuel.


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