ALWAYS CALL 911 if you are in immediate danger and need emergency help.
Check out our Hurricane Maria Story Map here.
For information about Maria recovery in Puerto Rico, please contact:
• Puerto Rico Emergency Management and Disaster Administration Agency (AEMEAD): 787-724-0124
For information about Maria recovery in the U.S. Virgin Islands, please contact:
• Virgin Islands Territorial Emergency Management Agency (VITEMA): 340-774-2244
To report suspected spills, contamination or possible violations:
• To report oil, chemical, or hazardous substance releases or spills, call the National Response Center 1-800-424-8802 (24 hours a day every day). For those without 800 access, please call 202-267-2675.
• Report a suspected environmental violation on EPA's reporting page.
For general questions about EPA’s response in Region 2, please call 1-888-283-7626 during regular business hours.
Media inquiries should be directed to firstname.lastname@example.org.
EPA Hurricane Maria Update – November 17, 2017
EPA’s Region 2 offices are managing EPA’s response efforts to Hurricane Maria. EPA is supporting the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) through its assistance to the governments of Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands (USVI). EPA is focused on environmental impacts and potential threats to people’s health caused by Hurricane Maria, as well as the safety of those in the affected areas. Our priority is getting clean drinking water to residents, which includes sampling, analysis and lab support, and getting wastewater systems up and running. EPA’s missions also include oil and chemical spill response, oil and chemical facility assessments and debris management.
As of Nov.17, 2017:
• About 330 personnel are currently involved in hurricane response efforts.
• About 97 personnel are on the ground in USVI to assist with response efforts.
• About 141 personnel are on the ground in Puerto Rico to assist with response efforts.
Hurricanes generate a lot of debris- some of it is considered hazardous waste. It’s important for EPA to help maximize recycling efforts and manage hazardous waste appropriately by segregating debris piles.
EPA is assisting with the handling and disposal of household hazardous, medical, and electronic wastes, as well as orphan containers, which include drums, tanks, fluid totes, canisters and similar containers found floating in or washed up near waterways. EPA plans to conduct air monitoring at collection areas and during most hazardous materials operations.
EPA is supporting the U.S. Coast Guard in the recovery of submerged or damaged vessels in Puerto Rico and the USVI. Field teams are locating and evaluating the condition of sunken vessels and assisting with the disposal of recovered oil and hazardous materials. Approximately 800 vessels have been assessed.
Assessment of Superfund Sites, Oil Sites and Regulated Facilities
EPA has completed preliminary assessments at EPA-led Superfund sites, oil sites, and chemical facilities in both Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands to determine if the sites were affected by Hurricane Maria, and is conducting follow-up actions, such as fence and structure repairs. In addition, EPA is coordinating with the lead federal agencies for two other sites, Culebra and Vieques.
EPA teams have assessed 240 fixed facilities in Puerto Rico and 65 in the USVI that are regulated under the Risk Management Plan (RMP), Facility Response Plan (FRP), or Spill Prevention, Control, and Countermeasure (SPCC) programs.
Drinking Water and Wastewater Management
EPA is continuing to assess the conditions of drinking water, including sampling, analysis and lab support. EPA is also working to get wastewater treatment systems up and running. PRASA and the Puerto Rico Department of Health continue to monitor drinking water quality to assure that PRASA’s drinking water supplies meet local and federal drinking water standards.
As of November 15, EPA completed 1,206 drinking water assessments in the USVI. In St. Croix, EPA is continuing to sample drinking water systems identified by DPNR. EPA is continuing to coordinate with DPNR to prioritize drinking water facilities to be assessed and sampled.
Water contaminated with livestock waste, human sewage, chemicals and other contaminants can lead to illness when used for drinking, bathing and other hygiene activities. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), people should not use the water from rivers, streams and coastal water to drink, bathe, wash or to cook with unless first boiling this water for a minimum of one minute. If boiling the water is not possible, water may be disinfected with bleach. To learn more about making water safe in an emergency, go to CDC’s Making Water Safe in an Emergency web page.
SIEMPRE LLAME AL 911 si se encuentra en peligro inmediato y necesita ayuda de emergencia.
Para obtener información sobre la recuperación tras el Huracán María en Puerto Rico, póngase en contacto con la:
• Agencia Estatal para el Manejo de Emergencias y Administración de Desastres (AEMEAD) de Puerto Rico: 787-724-0124
Para obtener información sobre la recuperación tras el Huracán María en las Islas Vírgenes Estadounidenses, póngase en contacto con la:
• Agencia Territorial para el Manejo de Emergencias de las Islas Vírgenes (VITEMA): 340-774-2244
Para reportar sospechas de derrames, contaminación o posibles infracciones:
• Para reportar derrames o liberación de aceite, sustancias químicas o peligrosas, llame al Centro Nacional de Respuesta al 1-800-424-8802 (las 24 horas del día, todos los días). Si no se tiene acceso a números con 800, por favor llame al 202-267-2675.
• Reporte una infracción ambiental sospechada en la página para reportes de la EPA.
Para preguntas generales acerca de la respuesta de la EPA en la Región 2, sírvase llamar al 1-888-283-7626 durante horarios normales de atención.
Las indagaciones de los medios de comunicación deben dirigirse a email@example.com.