Click2Daily: Following journey to get generators from Houston to Puerto Rico
HOUSTON – Flying into Puerto Rico, you can see signs of life along the coast, in the fields and in the mountains. Hurricane Maria stripped this island of its lush greenery when it hit two months ago.
Returning electricity to the island takes longer than it takes the green to return to the trees.
@millionair_fbos CEO Roger Woolsey talks about flying relief into #puertorico KPRC2 / Click2HoustonPosted by KPRC2 Ryan Korsgard on Wednesday, November 8, 2017
“It’s very tough. We suffer from heat and sunny days. And it’s not easy working with her. A bad situation,” said Rolando Colom.
Colom and his family live in Puerto Rico. He and his wife have an 11-month-old daughter, Valentina.
Still, many people on this island do not have electricity. Estimates of how many differ depending on who you ask. No electrical power means no refrigeration, no air conditioning and no fans.
On Thursday, Colom’s employer, Million Air of Houston, delivered nearly 40 generators to its employees on the island. Colom already had plans for his generator. He said, “Well, right now, put a fan for to sleep for my little girl.”
Companies, with employees on the island, fly aide in. Getting the help to the island is just part of the challenge.
Connecting it and transporting it to those who need it is the other challenge.
Companies, through their employees, have a built in network to distribute the aide.
“The people we took those to are really the first responders. The first responders are the ones who are taking on the freight, the people, exporting the folks that need to get back out for medical care. They’re going home every night. There’s still no electricity in San Juan, Puerto Rico. Like, 50 percent of the people have electricity,” said Roger Woolsey, CEO, of Million Air in Houston.
His company has nearly 70 employees working at two airports on the island where he flew in generators and water. He said he saw changes since he last visited.
“There is actually greenery growing back on the trees. The ones that were not blown down. It’s the island. You’re starting to see green. It’s like you see the life coming back," he said.
From the air, you could see more blue tarps covering damaged roofs. It was reminiscent of what the Houston area looked like after Hurricane Ike.
In Puerto Rico, you could also see damaged homes untouched since Maria hit. People who live here said the island will come back, in time.
“Maria hit us very hard and we’ve never seen any disaster like that. But we can pull up and we can be better than we are. We was,” Colom said.
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