Four years since Hurricane Maria hit Puerto Rick/US Virgin Islands

Wednesday, September 20, 2017, Hurricane Maria struck Puerto Rico with sustained winds of 155 mph. An estimated 2,975 people died in PR, 3 in USVI, and 81 the other parts of the carribean. It caused over $90 billion in property damage.

The Puerto Rico power grid was effectively destroyed by the hurricane, leaving millions without electricity. It still has not been fully restored, with rolling blackouts still occuring. Over 95% of the islands had no cell service, and other telecommunications service was limited mostly to San Juan metro area. Only a handful of radio stations were still operating.

Only about $18 billion of the $63 billion allocated by Congress for disaster relief and recovery has actually been disbursed. Most of the remaining funds are not expected to be disbursed until after fiscal year 2025.