Puerto Ricans Set to Leave After Hurricane Maria Limits Resources

Photo taken for The Flash by Daisy Toledo Mald

Photo taken for The Flash by Daisy Toledo Mald

Hannah Woodruff

The future of Puerto Rico has been irrevocably altered due to the hurricane. With the exact figures on the extent of damages and the costs for repairs unknown, Puerto Ricans are in desperate need of resources. As U.S. citizens, residents of the island have the legal right to move anywhere in the mainland, which is exactly what some plan to do.

Puerto Rico has endured many geographical disasters and shortages, but none as intense as Hurricane Maria. The aftermath of the hurricane continues to affect the residents significantly. Eighty-five percent of the residents do not have electricity and forty percent are short of running water. Electrical systems need wholesome restoration, cellphone towers have been knocked out, and water is scarce. Restoration may take months, if not years, and could cost Puerto Rico $45 to $90 billion. As a result, tens of thousands of Puerto Ricans have decided to flee for the United States in hopes of escaping the tragedies back home.

After Hurricane Maria devastated the island, Puerto Ricans are scheduled to head for the mainland U.S. over the next several years. It is estimated that electricity will not be fully restored for the next six to eight months, thus limiting one of the most essential necessities of the island. Without power and cell service, evacuees plan to rebuild their lives in the U.S. and leave the island, perhaps forever.