Cover of the New York Daily News, 27 September 2017. The headline reads, 'No food, no water, no power, no medical care for the dying ... Puerto Rico needs more help, Mr. President!' Photo: New York Daily News

By Abby Hamblin
29 September 2017

(San Diego Tribune) – Puerto Rico Mayor Yulín Cruz is begging for help with Hurricane Maria relief for the island of more than 3.4 million people suffering without power and other basic necessities.

“I am begging, begging anyone that can hear us to save us from dying,” she said Friday. “If anybody out there is listening to us, we are dying. And you are killing us with the inefficiency.”

Earlier Friday and ten days after Hurricane Maria swamped Puerto Rico as a Category 4 storm, President Donald Trump pledged “a massive federal mobilization” to help the island of 3.4 million people recover after its devastation.

“We will not rest until the people of Puerto Rico are safe,” Trump said before a speaking event on Friday.

Just how bad does Puerto Rico look right now?

“There's nothing left,” the president said. “It's been wiped out. The houses are largely flattened. The roads are washed away. There is no electricity; the plants are gone. They're gone. It's not like, let's send a crew in to fix them. You have to build brand-new electric. Sewage systems wiped out. Never been anything like this.”

Here’s a look at what we know about Puerto Rico going into the second weekend of recovery efforts.

Facing criticism that the federal response wasn’t fast enough, Trump has maintained that his administration is working on all cylinders but that it’s not easy because “this is an island surrounded by water — big water, ocean water.”

On Friday, scrutiny rose after Acting Secretary of Homeland Security Elaine Duke called the government’s response “a good news story” in terms of its “ability to reach people and the limited number of deaths that have taken place in such a devastating hurricane.”

Cruz saw the clip and said, "Dammit, this is not a good news story. This is a 'people are dying' story. This is a 'life or death' story." [more]

Puerto Rican mayor: 'We are dying, you are killing us with the inefficiency'

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