Earthquake Strikes Puerto Rico as Island Continues Recovery Efforts Post-Maria

Tags: Currents Brooklyn, Brooklyn Diocese, Brooklyn, NY, Earthquake, Faith, Feast Day, Guanica, Hurricane Maria, Hurricane Michael, Puerto Rico, Queens, NY, World News

By Emily Drooby

Homes knocked from their stilts, power lines pulled down almost to the road,  and cars crushed under a collapsed home are all scenes of destruction in Puerto Rico caused by a magnitude 5.8 earthquake that hit the island early Jan. 6. 

While several earthquakes have hit the island in the past week, Monday’s is by far the strongest. 

No casualties have been reported yet, but there’s significant damage to the town of Guánica. Roads by major cities like Ponce have been also been affected.

The incident is causing fear among those living in the Brooklyn Diocese with ties to puerto rico. 

“They’re just getting over Maria and they’re rebuilding the infrastructure, and an earthquake will now take away all that hard work that was put into restoring services on the island,” explained Norma Herrera, who works for St. Michael’s parish in Sunset Park, Brooklyn, and still has family in the commonwealth.  

“You worry,” she said. “You worry about what’s happening, what’s going to happen, how it’s going to affect the people still on the island.”

Puerto Rico is still dealing with the trauma from the category 5 hurricane that hit just over two years ago. 

Jorge Domínguez, Editor- in-Chief of The Tablet and Nuestra Voz,  saw the hurricane devastation firsthand. 

Having another major disaster — on Three Kings Day —  is especially difficult for the children of puerto rico.  

“It’s a day where kids are waiting for the sun to rise waiting to find out what the Three Kings brought to them,”  he explained. “Today really at sunrise they got an earthquake, so it’s especially sad,” he said. 

Instead, children woke up to cracks in their walls.