PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – Hurricane Fiona is approaching a Category 4 hurricane as it heads for Bermuda. Meanwhile, Puerto Rico residents are struggling to deal with the catastrophic damage caused by the storm as officials assess the situation.
An aerial video from the U.S. Coast Guard will help determine how and where federal and local agencies can help.
Dozens of organizations and non-profit organizations in the region are mobilizing to help families struggling to recover.
We also see new images on the ground from a Philadelphia resident who now lives on the island.
An eyewitness News spoke to a pastor who was born in Philadelphia and grew up in Camden but has now gone through Hurricanes Maria and Fiona while living in Puerto Rico. He says it stopped raining on Tuesday night.
The water in his town is receding, but he says help is needed on the island.
“A tree has fallen on the roof of the house, the cars are under water,” said Pastor David Rusi.
Rusi traveled through his small town of Cabo Rojo on the west coast of Puerto Rico. With an uneven signal, he was able to show CBS3 road roofs torn from houses and power poles nearly bent in half.
“So the last time we went through a hurricane, we had no electricity for nine months, so we pray it doesn’t happen again,” Rusi said.
House of Ruthenia withstood the winds of Hurricane Fiona, but living in the ocean, it survived a significant flood.
“The eye wall literally passed through this city and came out through the next city,” said Rusi. “For 24 hours at least, just trying to keep the water out and make sure the windows don’t break.”
Most of Puerto Rico is left without electricity and running water just five years after Hurricane Maria killed nearly 3,000 people on the island.
“Anything we can do to support can make a difference,” said Quetcy Lozada.
Now over 40 nonprofit organizations in Philadelphia and Pennsylvania are reuniting.
Unidos PA PR was founded after Maria and has helped give away over $ 400,000 to those in need. This group is asking for donations once again.
“If we send the money, at least they can buy things from the Puerto Rican people and distribute the money a little better.” said Nilda Ruiz.
CBS3 learns 100% of the donation will go to the island.
If you want to help, you can text PRFION2022 to 44321 to make a donation.
Rusi says that Fiona’s flood could be worse than Maria’s winds, and members of his church lost practically everything.
“They basically lost the entire interior of their house, which has 4.5.6 feet of water in it, so it’s really muddy,” Rusi said.
The city of Philadelphia will be celebrating the Puerto Rico Day parade this weekend and we have been told that action will be taken to help families recover from the hurricane.
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