Philly City Councilmember gets up close view of Puerto Rico's earthquake aftermath

Pat Loeb
January 14, 2020 - 3:38 pm
An earthquake destroyed building on January 11, 2020 in Guayanilla, Puerto Rico.

Jose Jimenez/Getty Images

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PHILADELPHIA (KYW Newsradio) — A Philadelphia City Councilmember with close ties to Puerto Rico is on the island, seeing how best to help those impacted by recent earthquakes and the continuing aftershocks. 

Councilmember Maria Quinones-Sanchez says many homes were destroyed in the initial quake, but even people whose homes appear to be intact are too worried by the aftershocks to sleep inside.

"FEMA, federal government, local government have set up several tent cities that will now have access to water and food and showers," she said. 

The Councilmember plans to visit those areas with a local Philadelphia partner — a group of women who've been teaching mosquito net-making.

Related: Latest quake triggers more concern among Philadelphia's Puerto Rican community

"They are now adapting the model for the tents, for the people who are going to stay outside because one of the things we saw post-Maria is the mosquito infestations and seniors and people with diabetes are more susceptible to getting bit," she said.

Quinones-Sanchez says one advantage, during this crisis, is that all of the needed supplies are on the island already so there's no need to ship supplies with all the logistical problems that entailed. 

She recommends people that want to help send money to nonprofits in Puerto Rico, which has an added benefit.

"It's a way to stimulate the economy," she said.