Major Hurricane Maria Report 22 September, 2017 (1800Z)

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Meteorological Quick Look

      • Even though Maria’s eye has become cloud filled since the previous advisory, reconnaissance data indicate that the hurricane has not weakened. The highest flight-level wind measured by the plane was 121 kt, accompanied by SFMR winds as high as 109 kt, so the initial intensity will remain 110 kt.
      • A very gradual reduction in wind speed is expected for the next 2 days. After that time, Maria will begin to move over a cold pool left behind by Jose, where sea surface temperatures are 26 degrees Celsius or colder.
      • Additional weakening is therefore anticipated on days 3 through 5, and the NHC intensity forecast is a little lower than SHIPS, LGEM, and the intensity consensus to account for the possible effect of the colder waters.
      • Maria continues to move northwestward, or 325/7 kt, around the southwestern periphery of a mid-level high centered south of Bermuda. The hurricane should turn north-northwestward later today and then northward in 24-36 hours when it begins to move between the high and an elongated trough extending southwest of Jose.

Power Status

        • 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 are in work with emergency crews beginning to stage for recovery. Airport opening is aiding in logistics
        • All HPH is on Generator support. It is anticipated that long term power outages will occur for many (4 to six months)
        • 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. Damage assessment reporting in progress
          • 911 service fully restored to Puerto Rico
          • 76 of 78 municipalities (counties) of Puerto Ric reporting less than 20 % wireless capability. Remaining two at 50 % service
          • One television reported out of service. No other reports
          • S. Virgin Islands 911 services partially resorted lacking location servicing.

Healthcare and Public Health Status


            • Private Sector Desk at FEMA’s Region II Response Coordination Center:


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Key Messaging

              • Life-safety measures and search and rescue operations remain the top priority.
              • San Juan Airport is opening to military and NGO aid flights to bring critical supplies.
              • Flash flooding continues in portions of Puerto Rico and the Dominican Republic due to persistent heavy rainfall from Maria’s trailing rain-bands.
              • Swells from Maria are beginning to reach the coast of the southeastern United States and will last for several days. These swells are likely to cause dangerous surf and life-threatening rip currents along the coast for the next several days, even with Maria forecast to remain well offshore over the western Atlantic Ocean.
              • Maria will be closer to the east coast of the United States and Bermuda by the middle of next week, but it is too soon to determine what, if any, direct impacts there might be in these areas.
              • Remind all that collection of water/ clothes/ blankets, etc. is counterproductive. Logistical staging and distribution if difficult at to impossible. H-ISAC suggests that cash aid offered to Non-government organization charities after verifying their integrity would bring better force multiplication to recovery.