Life after Hurricane Maria is difficult for the residents of Puerto Rico who are American citizens. People are trying to get off the island by waiting in line at the Luis Muñoz Marín International Airport.
Thousands of people are inside the hot airport sweating profusely hoping to catch a flight out of there. The terminals are running on backup generators with no air conditioning, little food and water. No one is getting out of line because they fear that they will lose their place in line. Kids are sleeping in strollers sweating.
USA Today caught up with one passenger, Andrew Arteaga saying "It's like the end of the world." Arteaga had spent five nights already with his wife Marjet and Ayla who is eight months old.
Airlines started to trickle in some flights but at least two a day because the hurricane knocked out the control tower's radar. Inbound flights are using their own radar systems and the island is using the "visual confirmation" method making it difficult for planes to leave and arrive to the island.
With no power or internet, it makes it difficult for airline representatives to confirm ticketing, baggage handling and other methods we take for granted.
FAA spokesperson Gregory Martin stated that they are supporting about a dozen flights to San Juan and there are people trying to restore radars and navigational aid which was damaged by the hurricane.
a nurse from Little Rock, Arkansas told reporter David Begnaud "What is happening here is inhumane."
"It's inhumane" what's happening at the airport in San Juan, a nurse from Little Rock, Arkansas told me - they need food, water and fans. pic.twitter.com/Fcm3QBiMVB— David Begnaud (@DavidBegnaud) September 25, 2017
Begnaud got a word with "Mary" who was waiting outside. She said: "I heard yesterday someone died here. Because they don't have no air, they don't give out water, they don't give a ****. I can't take it anymore. They don't care. This is worse than Katrina or whatever you call that."
Mary has been waiting to depart San Juan to go to Orlando for three days. She is one of many people who are trying to get off the island.
More from inside airport where it's a sweat box pic.twitter.com/KD5Ucn03Mq— David Begnaud (@DavidBegnaud) September 25, 2017
Flights getting off of the island are ridiculous just to get to Miami, Florida which is 1,031 miles away. Ricky Martin posted these prices on his Twitter feed.
THIS IS NOT RIGHT. WE ARE IN THE MIDDLE OF A HUMANITARIAN CRISIS. THERE SHOULD BE LAWS AGAINST THIS. pic.twitter.com/tmG1CXPQAS— Ricky Martin (@ricky_martin) September 25, 2017
On Monday, fans of Daddy Yankee answered the call when the Latin artist posted to social media that supplies are needed for the victims of the hurricane in Puerto Rico and also the devistating earthquake in Mexico.
They packed up diapers, bottled water, mosquito repellant, batteries, flashlights and other neccessities. Daddy Yankee also partnered with Feeding America who will take donations to Puerto Rican's.
Tim Duncan will bring a second round of relief aid to the U.S. Virgin Islands who also need aid and support too.
How to help Puerto Rico
There are plenty of ways to give. See below on how you can contribute. Any amount helps.
- You can donate to the Red Cross by calling 1-800-842-2200 or their website.
- Give to Global Giving which connects non-profits with donors and companies.
- Hispanic Federation online UNIDOS disaster relief fund helping children and their families recover from the recent disasters in Puerto Rico and Mexico.
- The Texas Diaper Bank is accepting monetary donations to help babies with diapers.
- Catholic Charities provides the help and services to people in need, especially in emergency situations after a natural disaster.