How to Help Victims of Hurricane Fiona – NBC New York

Five years ago, Hurricane Maria devastated Puerto Rico.

Storms have once again hit the island and its Caribbean neighbor, the Dominican Republic, due to the catastrophic flooding and landslides caused by Hurricane Fiona. Following Fiona, the American Red Cross activated its volunteer service Monday to help affected communities.

With the help of our sister station Telemundo, a Red Cross website and phone line have been set up to accept donations aimed at recovering from the damage caused by the tropical system.

Puerto Rico Governor Pedro Pierluisi reported that a total of 1,083 people have been rescued to Fiona so far.

The organization has focused its efforts on guiding the community to take necessary precautionary measures in their homes in the face of the terrible flooding.

“With the possibility of flooding, we urge families to stay in safe places and not risk their lives for last-minute evacuation at the most critical moments,” said Lee Vanessa Feliciano, regional director of the American Red Cross Chapter Puerto Rico.

For more information, visit the Red Cross/Telemundo link or call 1-800-596-6567.


In a flood situation, the American Red Cross makes the following recommendations:

  • Find out about the flood risks in the region.
  • Stay off the roads and away from flood waters. If you must drive, avoid flooded roads.
  • If you get stuck on a flooded road and water rises around you, quickly get out of the car, go to higher ground and stay there.
  • Do not step into puddles or standing water when power lines are dropped on the roadway or in the streets.
  • Obey eviction orders and don’t return home until authorities say it’s safe.
  • Check if you have insurance that covers flooding. If not, find out how to get flood insurance.
  • Store insurance policies, ID cards, and other important documents in a sealed plastic bag in your utility kit.
  • Listen to bulletins provided by official bodies for information about flooding in your area.
  • For older adults, the American Red Cross recommends understanding the medical, physical, and cognitive needs that may affect your ability to respond in an emergency. Have established a contingency plan for operating medical equipment or storing medication related to medical needs. In addition, they need to build a support network. Plan how you will communicate with those who will help you. Identify who can help: Include family, friends, neighbors, caregivers, and healthcare providers in your network.
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In addition, the Suffolk County Police Commissioner announced Tuesday that the county is conducting a relief effort for victims of Hurricane Fiona in Puerto Rico.

“As residents of Long Island, we know firsthand the devastation extreme weather can wreak, and today my thoughts are with the people of Puerto Rico as the island grapples with catastrophic flooding and a trail of unimaginable destruction from Hurricane Fiona.” , said Steve Bellone, chief executive officer of Suffolk County. “At times like these we all need to come together and through this supply drive we hope to help gather the supplies needed to support those in need.”

Collection bins will be placed at each Suffolk County Police Station and at Yaphank Police Headquarters. Donations of toiletries, nonperishable groceries, personal care products, and baby products, including diapers, will be accepted at these locations through September 30 if shipped to Puerto Rico.

“Hurricane Fiona left a trail of unimaginable destruction in its wake for the people of Puerto Rico, whose safety and well-being have been my constant concern since news of the storm broke,” said Commissioner Harrison. “I hope that Suffolk County residents and the SCPD will come together to collect the supplies needed to ease the burden on Puerto Ricans in rebuilding and recovering.”

Meanwhile, Comcast NBCUniversal announced it would be donating $250,000 to the Hispanic Federation, a nonprofit organization that provides on-the-ground emergency relief services and essential supplies to communities affected by the disaster, in support of immediate relief and recovery efforts.

Disclosure: Comcast owns NBCUniversal, the parent company of NBC News, Telemundo and that station.

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