On Wednesday, Hurricane Irma swept over Puerto Rico, leaving one million residents without electrical power and 150,000 without running water. Flood levels have been reported in rivers across the island, and more rain is expected. The U.S. Coast Guard has begun overflights to assess the damage and search for residents in distress.
“Our first priority is ensuring safety of lives,” said Captain Eric King, the commander of USCG Sector San Juan. “Following that, reopening the ports is a top priority, but we have to make sure we also do it safely. Opening the port prematurely could create a situation for a greater risk or incident, which could ultimately result in an even longer port closure.”