Major Hurricane Maria Report 2 October 2017 (1800z)

Posted by: Julia      Date: October 02, 2017
TLP White
This aggregated report summarizes activities and impacts as sourced by FEMA, DHS, NOAA and HHS.

*Any reproduction or reposting of this content requires proper credit/attribution to NH-ISAC.

Meteorological Quick Look.

    • With sustained winds of 155 mph at landfall — a strong Category 4 storm and nearly a Category 5 — Maria was so powerful that it disabled radar, weather stations and cell towers across Puerto Rico. The entire critical infrastructure impacts to that island are devastating.

 

    • Though the winds themselves were of catastrophic nature, the threat and hazard of inland flooding created a great concern.

 

    • The U.S. Virgin Islands had rainfall totals excessing 35 inches.

 

    • Greater than 50 % of the island of Puerto Rico experienced more than 15 inches of rainfall total. This hazard was made worst by the mountainous terrain and risk of landslides and severe flash flooding.

 

    • A note that as of Monday morning 2nd October, the Puerto Rican National Weather Service forecasts additional rain and flash flooding to an otherwise already devastated topography.

 

Overview of Meteorological Impact (Puerto Rico)

    • Maria’s strong winds spread large amounts of debris across the entire area. All full trees were leafless, and those that were not snapped or uprooted by Maria’s strong winds, lost medium to large branches. During the interview process, stories and images were particularly similar.

 

    • Most structures across island are built using concrete as the main material, countless homes and buildings sustained some type of structural damage. Structures without a concrete roof suffered some type of roof damage or it was completely blown off.

 

    • Nearly all commercial signage, fences, and canopies were destroyed, including large digital high definition billboards. The last time that Puerto Rico experienced a category 4 or higher hurricane was back on 1928 with Hurricane San Felipe II.

 

    • Floods were considered catastrophic, overwhelming and overflowing rivers and tributaries, medium to large scale mudslides and the extensive damage to structures, as well as roads and bridges.

 

    • Streamflow data from the U.S. Geological Survey showed that 53 out of 65 river gauges met or exceeded flood stage.

 

    • Among these rivers, 30 exceeded major flood stage while 13 reached or exceeded all-time record level.

 

    • Widespread river flooding was observed across the island, particularly along the southeastern, northern and western portions of Puerto Rico.

 

    • The situation was aggravated by flood water accumulation in low lying and poor drainage areas. Several water pumps failed, and as a result, vast areas were flooded by rain, sewage and sea water. Some areas severely affected within the Metro Area include Ocean Park, Santurce, Condado, Cataño and Loiza.

 

FEMA Activities

    • Officials in the U.S. Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico opened points of distribution (POD) in Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands for survivors to get meals, water, and other commodities.

 

    • FEMA, working in coordination with federal partners, provided millions of meals and millions of liters of water to Puerto Rico and U.S. Virgin Islands. Additional meals and water continue to arrive to the islands daily via both air and sea.

 

    • As of October 1, the Governor of Puerto Rico established 11 Regional Staging Areas around the island, serving all 78 municipalities.

 

    • FEMA’s National Business Emergency Operations Center (NBEOC) is facilitating private sector requests for humanitarian relief. The NBEOC continues coordination between government and private sector organizations as the community responds to Hurricane Maria.

 

    • Mobile Emergency Response Support (MERS) communications assets and personnel continue to support the FEMA Incident Management Assistance Teams (IMAT), Urban Search and Rescue (US&R), National Disaster Medical System (NDMS), and other federal teams in Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands. There are currently more than 30 MERS personnel in Puerto Rico and more than 20 MERS personnel in the U.S. Virgin Islands.

 

    • A U.S. Coast Guard (USCG) mobile communications team is in Puerto Rico to help improve communications across the storm-impacted area.

 

Healthcare and Public Health Status

    • The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services established seven temporary medical sites in Puerto Rico to aid local hospitals that are partially operational, and preparing to provide medical care.

 

    • The hospital sites are part of a three-tiered approach to supporting medical needs in Puerto Rico.

 

  1. – Providing medical staff working at a temporary medical site set up at Centro Medico to assist that emergency and trauma center;
  2. – Providing medical staff at temporary medical sites augmenting six hospitals in key locations across the territory
  3. – Maintaining contact with the remaining 61 hospitals to stay abreast of the supply and fuel needs.

 

    • Power is being restored to hospitals and all hospital assessments are complete. In Puerto Rico, 59 hospitals are operational to care for current patients or receiving patients with one hospital being fully operational. Power has been restored to nine hospitals. One Department of Veterans Affairs hospital is open and five are open for walk-ins.

 

    • FEMA reports the Royal Caribbean cruise ship departed September 29 for Ft. Lauderdale, transporting passengers from St. Croix, St. John, and St. Thomas; will arrive 03 Oct

 

    • The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) reports more than 500 of its personnel remain engaged in Puerto Rico and USVI to address residents’ medical and public health needs

 

Puerto Rico

 

    • On 01 Oct, HHS reported 14 hospitals are on grid power (20 percent back on electric grid)

 

    • On 01 Oct, FEMA reported one hospital is fully operational, 62 hospitals remain degraded, and two are closed. There are four hospitals with unknown status. There are ten hospitals back on the electrical grid with intermittent generator support

 

USVI

    • FEMA reported the Schneider Regional Medical Center on St. Thomas and the Governor Juan Luis facility on St. Croix have been condemned

 

Communications Status

    • 75 of 78 municipalities (counties) have less than 20 % cell phone towers operational.

 

    • Broadcast radio has been largely restored with television restoration ongoing.

 

    • On 01 Oct, ESF-2 reports 280 satellite phones arrived in PR on 30 Sep and are being tested and distributed throughout the island.

 

    • MERS personnel continue to assess land mobile radio coverage to ensure all hospitals fall within coverage ranges; working to develop tracking by primary, alternate, contingency and emergency communications capabilities

 

    • Primary and alternate cover wireline and cellular capabilities provided by industry and commercial while contingency is being handled by high frequency armature radio relay lead (HF/ARRL) collaboration and emergency is the Land Mobile Radio (LMR) network.

 

    • SMS text messaging available to Iridium Satellite Phones

 

Dams Infrastructure Status

    • On 01 Oct, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers completed 14 of 17 priority dam inspections

 

    • The Guajataca Dam spillway continues to erode and rainfall related inflows are increasing the elevation of the reservoir pool. Immediate risk reduction measures are ongoing to stabilize the dam spillway and clear outlet blockage

 

Puerto Rico

    • As of 1030 EDT on 01 Oct, the Department of Energy (DOE) reported at least five percent of Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority (PREPA) customers have had power restored. The airport, marine terminal, and several hospitals are also back on grid power

 

    • DLA is working with USACE, FEMA, and DOD to identify material and distribution requirements to support PR electrical grid rebuild efforts

 

USVI

    • On 01 Oct, FEMA reported the Northeast Public Power Association is transporting 40 crewmen and 29 trucks to support power restoration on St. Thomas and St. John; the date of arrival is yet to be determined

 

    • On Saturday afternoon, 30 Sep, DOE reported approximately 15 percent of customers on St. Thomas and 10 percent of customers on St. Croix have had powered restored, including critical facilities such as airports and hospitals.

 

    • On 30 Sep, FEMA reported the Virgin Islands Water and Power Authority (VIWAPA) expects to re-energize portions of Cruz Bay, St. Thomas between 09 Oct and 14 Oct

 

Transportation and Fuel Status

  • All commercial airports in Puerto Rico are operational. Recovery efforts are now supporting more than a dozen commercial passenger flights per day at Luis Munoz Marin International Airport in San Juan, Puerto Rico. Six hurricane relief flights, including military flights, are arriving at Luiz Munoz Marin International Airport (SJU) per day.
  • 26 chainsaw teams and one Incident Management Team (IMT) (23 individuals) from the Department of Agriculture’s United States Forest Service arrived in Puerto Rico Wednesday to conduct emergency road clearance and manage logistics.
  • A fourteen-person team from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is supporting debris removal and tree clearance to help restore access to roads in Vieques.
  • The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) debris experts are assisting FEMA with debris management strategies in Puerto Rico and U.S. Virgin Islands.
  • One of the first priorities is emergency route clearance in multiple locations to enable access to remote locations.

 

Water / Wastewater/ Waste Management System

    • The U.S. Virgin Islands Water and Power Authority drinking water system is back online and other drinking water systems on the islands are top priority for receiving generators. Additionally, the Concordia potable water pump station is online in St. Croix.
    • The U.S. Virgin Islands Water and Power Authority Waste Management, and USACE are addressing potential public health risks of garbage build up; coordinating route clearance of wires and poles to enable garbage haulers to access the St. Thomas landfill.
    • On 01 Oct, the EPA recommended the deployment of eight assessment teams of EPA and DOH staff beginning on Monday. The first assessment visits will be to the Non-PRASA systems in the Municipality of Cagua

 
******* End Report *******

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

Posted by: Julia      Date: September 22, 2017

This information is marked TLP White; Subject to standard copyright laws. TLP: White information may be distributed without restriction.

*Any reproduction or reposting of this content requires proper credit/attribution to NH-ISAC.

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:
              Phone:

732-804-9813

            •  or

787-296-3500

Email: Fritzmarie.cesar@fema.dhs.gov or Delyris.Aquino-Santiago@fema.dhs.gov

To share any further information or forward questions about impacts to the HPH Sector please connect with us at cip@hhs.gov.

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. NH-ISAC suggests that cash aid offered to Non-government organization charities after verifying their integrity would bring better force multiplication to recovery.

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

Posted by: Julia      Date: September 21, 2017

This information is marked TLP White; Subject to standard copyright laws. TLP: White information may be distributed without restriction.

*Any reproduction or reposting of this content requires proper credit/attribution to NH-ISAC.

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.

Major Hurricane Maria Report 20 September, 2017 (1700Z)

Posted by: Julia      Date: September 20, 2017

This information is marked TLP White; Subject to standard copyright laws. TLP: White information may be distributed without restriction.

*Any reproduction or reposting of this content requires proper credit/attribution to NH-ISAC.

Meteorological Quick Look

      • Last radar image from the San Juan WSR-88D was received at 0950 UTC when Maria’s eye was located only about 5 n mi off the southeastern coast of Puerto Rico.
      • Subsequent 1-minute imagery from the GOES-16 satellite, as well as surface observations, indicate that the eye made landfall a little south of Yabucoa Harbor, Puerto Rico, around 1015 UTC.
      • Without radar velocity data, initial intensity is incredibly uncertain, best guess is 120 kts based on a typical inland decay rate.
      • Maria’s center is expected to move off the northern coast of Puerto Rico soon, and an Air Force Reserve reconnaissance aircraft is scheduled to intercept the center early this afternoon and provide a better estimate of how much Maria has weakened.
      • Initial motion is northwestward, or 305/10 kt. This northwestward motion is forecast to continue for the next 48 hours, followed by a turn toward the north by days 4 and 5.
      • The track guidance is tightly clustered and there were no significant changes made to the NHC forecast track.
      • Once Maria moves off the coast of Puerto Rico, it will take some time for the structure to reorganize over the warm waters of the Atlantic Ocean.
      • However, shear is expected to be less than 10 kts for the next 24-36 hours, and Maria has an opportunity to restrengthen a bit over that time-period. The NHC intensity forecast lies just above the intensity consensus through much of the forecast period.
      • Since we don’t have radar imagery from San Juan, and the eye has become cloud filled in satellite imagery, the hourly position updates are being discontinued.

 

Healthcare and Public Health Status

 

 Key Messaging

        • Maria’s core is moving over Puerto Rico, with life-threatening wind, storm surge, and rainfall impacts continuing over the island. Everyone in Puerto Rico should follow advice from local officials to avoid life-threatening flooding from storm surge and rainfall. A Hurricane Warning remains in effect for the Virgin Islands, but conditions should gradually improve there later today.
        • Wind speeds atop and on the windward sides of hills and mountains and on high-rise buildings could be much stronger than the near-surface winds indicated in this advisory.
        • A Hurricane Warning is also in effect for the northern coast of the Dominican Republic, the Turks and Caicos Islands and the southeastern Bahamas, where Maria is expected to bring dangerous wind, storm surge, and heavy rainfall.
        • Widespread damage is expected. Healthcare and Public Health needs are expected to be great. Government Agency and NGO’s are staging and ready to assist.