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SHOCK: 100s of Thousands of Bottles of Water Found A Year After PR Hurricane

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A photo that showed hundreds of thousands of water bottles meant to reach victims of Hurricane Maria that are sitting at an airport in Puerto Rico was shared widely on social media Tuesday evening.

The photo shows the bottles in boxes and covered with a blue tarp sitting on a runway in Ceiba. The bottles were part of relief efforts provided by the US Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) after the devastating hurricane barreled through the U.S. territory when they were turned over to the central government last year, according to the CBS News correspondent David Begnaud.

“Although you don’t believe it… almost a million boxes of water that were never delivered to the villages,” posted Abdiel Santana, a photographer working for a Puerto Rican state police agency who took the pictures. “Is there anyone who can explain this?”

Santana posted on Facebook on Tuesday: “ although you do not believe it … almost a million boxes of water that were never delivered to the people d PR [Puerto Rico], before the emergency of hurricane Maria. Will there be someone who can explain this? ”

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Begnaud also tweeted out photos of the water bottles on Tuesday saying,
“BREAKING: What may be millions of water bottles. meant for victims of Hurricane Maria, have been sitting on a runway in Ceiba, Puerto Rico, since last year, according to , which confirmed the news to me, late tonight, after pictures, posted today on social media, went viral.”

Begnaud, with more details:

“The water was kept in an area that was pretty hard hit during the storm and could have used all the water they could have gotten,” Begnaud said in a video report (seen below).

CBS This Morning tweeted Wednesday morning: “. has told that what could be millions of bottles of water that were sent to the island to help the survivors of Hurricane Maria, has been sitting on a runway in Ceiba, Puerto Rico since last year,” reports.”

Celebrity chef José Andrés, who brought his own crew of volunteers to help feed victims of Maria after the storm called for an “official independent investigation” into what happened with the bottles of drinking water.

José Andrés (@chefjoseandres) tweeted on Wednesday:

“My teams knew about it but first they will say no we can not use them, months later water was no good for human consumption.We were “buying” water because they wouldn’t give it to us we need an official independent investigation!”

Erin Schrode (@ErinSchrode) pointed out that this isn’t news, rather many in Puerto Rico have known about the water bottles.

“This isn’t breaking news, but IS a travesty. @FEMA has had/known about this water — as have many of us here in Puerto Rico — since early 2018. I had drone footage of the already unusable bottled water in February. I shared with media, but no one thought it mattered…🤷🏻‍♀️🇵🇷

President Trump doubling down on his administration’s response to Hurricane Maria on Wednesday after the mayor of San Juan-who has been a critic of the effort-called the Trump administration’s response “incompetent.”

Tuesday, President Trump made a statement during an Oval Office meeting where he was going over preparations for the incoming hurricane Florence, “I think Puerto Rico was incredibly successful. Puerto Rico was, actually, our toughest one of all because it’s an island, so you just — you can’t truck things onto it. Everything is by boat,” he said during the meeting.

“The job that FEMA and law enforcement and everybody did, working along with the governor in Puerto Rico, I think was tremendous. I think that Puerto Rico was an incredible, unsung success,” he continued.

Shortly after Trump’s comments during the Oval Office meeting, San Juan Mayor Carmen Yulin Cruz snapped back at the president in a tweet.

“Success? Federal response according to Trump in Puerto Rico a success? If he thinks the death of 3,000 people os a success God help us all.”

Trump, however, doubled down on his administration’s response to Hurricane Maria on Wednesday after the mayor of San Juan-who has been a critic of the effort-called the Trump administration’s response “incompetent.”

President Trump tweeted on Wednesday, “We got A Pluses for our recent hurricane work in Texas and Florida (and did an unappreciated great job in Puerto Rico, even though an inaccessible island with very poor electricity and a totally incompetent Mayor of San Juan). We are ready for the big one that is coming!”

The president has posted several tweets this week covering the incoming Category 4 Hurricane Florence, on how to prepare, evacuation information, and has urged those in the path of the hurricane to heed the direction of state and local officials.

Wednesday afternoon, President Trump urged everyone in the path of Florence to follow local evacuation orders and stressed the importance of being prepared for the storm in a tweet that highlighted instructions and information on Ready.gov.

“It is imperative that everyone follow local evacuation orders. This storm is extremely dangerous. Be SAFE!

 

 

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