The View from Puerto Rico as Hurricane Irma Arrived

Elias Hubbard
September 9, 2017

Her daughter, Gabriela Vega, recounts the storm going on for hours.

While many scheduled flights were nixed in the path of Irma, U.S. and Canadian airlines scrambled on Wednesday to dispatch aircraft to the Caribbean to airlift passengers and other staff out before the powerful hurricane blew through.

SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico - A nurse who lives in Richmond rode out Hurricane Irma at a hotel in San Juan, Puerto Rico.

"We were actually fortunate last night", she said.

Omar Alvarez, 53, a real state appraiser, chatted in the street with neighbours near the San Juan shore, eyeing a roughly 60-foot (18-m) tall tree that had toppled over in the storm, taking out power lines.

"We're all going to have dinner and sit it out here", said Lundquist, with a little laughter.

The storm is expected to pass just north of the Dominican Republic and Haiti and head towards Bahamas where emergency evacuations have been ordered for six southern islands - Mayaguana, Inagua, Crooked Island, Acklins, Long Cay and Ragged Island.

However, their home lost power at about 10:30 p.m. Wednesday.

She said she was anxious about her extended family in more rural parts of Puerto Rico, where some people have reportedly been tying up their wooden roofs to prevent them from toppling.

"They've been working since four o'clock this morning cleaning up this area, so they're doing really good", said Hoogeveen. "And now we feel so helpless because we're all the way up here and we're just praying for our family", she said.

"We didn't board anything up", Smith said.

Puerto Ricans were awaiting word of damage to the island of Culebra, which is part of Puerto Rico and got much more of a whipping from the hurricane.

He said managers of his hotel told him they have generators in the event of power outages and have brought in food to keep everyone fed as the storm comes through. However the weather in Puerto Rico wasn't unsafe for flying-yet.

"She's pretty nervous", Peter said. He's anxious it may take the same path as Irma. Founded in 1950, the Association has over 500 corporate members, among them large, medium, and small hotels; restaurants; Airlines; and other businesses that serve the Puerto Rico tourism industry.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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