Puerto Ricans push for help as they recover from hurricane

Published: Sep. 19, 2022 at 10:20 PM EDT
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Five years after Hurricane Maria devastated the island of Puerto Rico, Hurricane Fiona left its mark.

"The most concerning thing is people that have lost their homes, their belongings. The roads are dangerous, you can't drive through them. Some parts are still flooded," said Carlos Auvellalet from Carolina, the northern part of the island.

He said Hurricane Maria's winds packed a punch but Fiona's rains were much worse.

"There was too much rain, it was persistent rain. It's been more than 24 hours and it's still raining. Right now I can go outside and still get wet cause it's raining," said Auvellalet.

Auvellalet said he lost power Saturday morning and is one of over a million people in Puerto Rico in the dark, late Monday night.

In West Palm Beach, Auvellalet's family is happy they can still communicate with him bringing flashbacks to Hurricane Maria.

"It's hard over here because there was no way to send anything over there because the post offices were all shut down, so they were running out of food and everything and I'm afraid this could happen again," said Waleska Rivera, Auvellalet's family member.

The Riveras own El Mata Munchies and they say 80% of their staff is people that fled Puerto Rico 5 years ago after the storm.

The Riveras said they're working on community collaboration to help raise funds and supplies for those impacted by Hurricane Fiona.

"It's important because it's livelihood. You have people that probably can't cook, people that are living in poverty on the island. They're probably saying, 'how are we going to eat?' People are waiting hours and hours just for fuel," said El Mata Munchies Owner Eddie Rivera.

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