Metro Briefs 9-26-2018
Another major hurricane in the Caribbean and a deadly earthquake in Mexico take center stage this week as concerns about what exactly is going on with Mother Earth.
Scenes on the news look like what could be what the New Testament calls the Apocalypse. Strong storms happening back to back coupled with a massive earthquake.
As Caribbean nations continue to recover from the devastation left behind by hurricanes Irma and Jose, Hurricane Maria is the third major hurricane to threaten the Leeward Islands in the past two weeks.
The Category 5 storm hit the islands of Dominica, Guadeloupe, Martinique, St. Lucia, Barbados the U.S. Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico. As of Wednesday nine deaths were reported.
The hurricane slammed the U.S. Virgin Islands again, causing more extensive damage to the island. The outer eyewall of the storm crossed the town of St. Croix. The storm ripped off roofs and downed trees.
“There were a lot of homes that had lost their roofs,” said Holland Redfield, a radio talk show host and former senator in the USVI Legislature. “It was a sad sight. I‘m in a very densely populated area now and I see a tremendous amount of confusion. A lot of trees are down.”
On the island of Dominica, Prime Minister Roosevelt Skerrit said in a Facebook post that his focus is on rescuing the trapped and securing medical assistance for the injured.
“Initial reports are of widespread devastation,” he said Tuesday. “So far we have lost all what money can buy and replace. My greatest fear for the morning is that we will wake to news of serious physical injury and possible deaths as a result of likely landslides triggered by persistent rains.”
Hurricane Maria’s main target was Puerto Rico Wednesday, where nearly 155 mph winds knocked out power to 100 percent of the island, leaving 3.5 million people in the dark. It’s the strongest hurricane to hit the island since 1928 and the most intense hurricane to hit the territory in recorded history.
“This is total devastation,” said Carlos Mercader, a spokesman for Puerto Rico’s governor. “Puerto Rico, in terms of the infrastructure, will not be the same. ... This is something of historic proportions.”
Meanwhile in Mexico, a massive 7.1 magnitude earthquake hit Central Mexico Tuesday. The quake caused damage in the Mexican states of Puebla, Morelos and in the Mexico City area.
Reports indicate that buildings have collapsed and nearly 250 people were killed as of Wednesday. At school in Mexico City, a reported 22 bodies were found in the rubble and 30 children and eight adults were reported missing.
“We are facing a new national emergency,” Mexican President Peña Nieto said. “Unfortunately many people have lost their lives, including girls and boys in schools, buildings and houses. I want to express my condolences to those who lost a family member or a loved one. Mexico shares your grief.”
The earthquake occurred on the same day as the 1985 Mexico City earthquake that killed at least 5,000 people.