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Puerto Rico gets $2.5 million in federal funds for emergency road repairs

By on September 15, 2017

(Juan J. Rodríguez/CB)

SAN JUAN — The U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) has approved $2.5 million in emergency funds for Puerto Rico highway repairs after Hurricane Irma, Resident Commissioner Jenniffer González said.

Gov. Ricardo Rosselló spoke with Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao on Friday and offered a general report on the damages to island roadways after the passage of the atmospheric phenomenon just over a week ago.

“I am grateful to Secretary Elaine Chao for her prompt consideration of the impact of Hurricane Irma on our roads. These assigned funds will allow us to act promptly to improve the state of the roadways affected by the atmospheric system,” the governor said in a statement.

The $2.5 million comes from the Emergency Relief program funds established by the Fixing America’s Surface Transportation Act (FAST).

“It is an initial allocation that came about thanks to the disaster declaration for Puerto Rico issued by President Donald Trump. The work approved under these funds includes emergency repairs…minimize the extent of damage, and even protect facilities and make permanent repairs,” the resident commissioner said.

More than 600 roadway-related incidents were reported the night the storm affected Puerto Rico; most cases had to do with fallen trees. In addition, at least 72 roads were obstructed due to landslides or other issue, according to data from the Transportation & Public Works Department (DTOP by its Spanish initials).

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