PR Declares State of Emergency After 6.4 Magnitute Earthquake Hits Island, Brooklyn Gets Ready to Help

PR Declares State of Emergency After 6.4 Magnitute Earthquake Hits Island, Brooklyn Gets Ready to Help

A 6.4 magnitude earthquake hit Puerto Rico this morning, killing one man and injuring several others as well as cutting off power to large areas of the island, CNN reported.

The quake is the most damaging to hit the island since 1918, and came just one day after another 5.8 magnitude quake. A series of smaller tremors also took place over the course of three hours on the night of December 28-29. Governor Wanda Vasquez Garced has declared a state of emergency, though the island has not yet requested FEMA assistance.

Puerto Ricans represent a major part of Brooklyn’s cultural identity. Over 30 percent of the entire Hispanic population of Brooklyn – roughly half a million – is Puerto Rican, and the group also represents 30 percent of Bushwick’s Hispanic population. Thanks to this robust community, Brooklyn saw a massive outpouring of support for the island following Hurricane Maria in September 2017.

During a drive in East Williamsburg, Brooklyn residents showed up to organize stacks of donated food, drinking water, and other supplies, and local businesses offered free dance classes in exchange for donated goods. Still, the island had just barely recovered from the disaster when yesterday’s temblor struck.

Politicians like Congresswoman Nydia Velasquez, who was born in Puerto Rico and grew up in Bushwick, tweeted their support.

In a call with Bklyner, Council Member Rafael Espinal said that “my thoughts and prayers are with our friends and neighbors in Puerto Rico. We do have a large Puerto Rican population in New York that are concerned about their families back home. I am more than certain that New York City and the state are ready to stand ready, willing, and able to help where needed.”

Some ways to help:

We will keep you updated on more ways to help in the days ahead.

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