Major Hurricane Maria Report 21 September, 2017 (1900Z)

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Meteorological Quick Look

      • Maria is maintaining a large, 40 nm wide eye, and overall, the hurricane’s satellite presentation has not changed since the previous advisory. The initial intensity is held at 100 kt.
      • Maria appears to be moving over the remnant cold wake leftover from Hurricane Irma, but it should begin to move over an area of higher oceanic heat content during the next 24 hours or so. Therefore, some strengthening is still forecast, although it is not especially aggressive given what the latest intensity guidance is showing.
      • Gradual weakening is likely from 48 hours onward due to some increase in southwesterly shear, as well as lower oceanic heat content over the western Atlantic. Still, Maria is expected to remain a hurricane for the next 5 days.
      • Maria is expected to turn gradually north-northwestward to north-northeastward by the end of the forecast period, keeping it over the waters of the western Atlantic after moving by the Turks and Caicos Islands and the southeastern Bahamas. The track models continue to be tightly clustered, and the updated NHC track forecast lies right along the previous forecast, down the middle of the guidance envelope.

Power Status

        • Initial reports indicate that both territories sustained significant damage to their energy infrastructure. The entire power grid in Puerto Rico, including 100 percent of its generation capacity, remains down. Detailed damage assessments in Puerto Rico will begin as soon as it is safe to proceed.
        • All HPH is on Generator support. It is anticipated that long term power outages will occur for many (4 to six months)
        • Public power sector has activated its mutual assistance network and is coordinating with DOE, DHS, and FEMA on resource needs for both territories.
        • Updates will be available as the response efforts in Puerto Rico and U.S. Virgin Islands continue.

 

 

Communication Status

          • FCC has Activated Disaster Information Reporting for Hurricane Maria. No reports fled as initial response is in work.
          • Note: Hurricane Irma – Florida is fully restored)

Healthcare and Public Health Status

            • Reports gathered indicate primary concern at this time is for generator fuel to support critical functions. Local emergency management and FEMA are aware with mitigation and response plans in work.
            • Living areas for critical response teams limited. U.S. Navy is in support.
            • Information is slow to filter out of areas of impact. Initial damage response teams should have better picture in 24 hours.
            • FEMA National Business Emergency Operations Center Dashboard (NBEOC)

Key Messaging

            • Life-safety measures and search and rescue operations remain the top priority.
            • This situation is dynamic and battle rhythm will intensify over the next few days.
            • Flash flood emergencies continue in portions of Puerto Rico due to persistent heavy rainfall from Maria’s trailing rainbands.
            • Catastrophic flooding is occurring on the island, especially in areas of mountainous terrain, and everyone in Puerto Rico should continue to follow advice from local officials to avoid these life-threatening flooding conditions…
            • Remind all that collection of water/ clothes/ blankets, etc. is counterproductive. Logistical staging and distribution if difficult at o impossible. NH-ISAC suggests that cash aid is offered to Non-government organization charities after verifying their integrity.