Puerto Ricans hoping Trump sends aid after earthquakes

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A woman stands in front of a house damaged by a 5.8 quake in Guanica, Puerto Rico on January 6, 2020.

The island was hit by a 5.9 magnitude natural disaster on Saturday and a 6.4 magnitude quake earlier in the week, along with dozens of aftershocks. This clash killed one person, injured nine others, and damaged or destroyed hundreds of homes and several schools and shops in the southwest of the island. The U.S. Geological Service initially reported the aftershock had a magnitude of 6.0 but later downgraded it to 5.9.

On Dec. 28, the USGS recorded two quakes of magnitude 4.7 and 5.0.

The trio partnered with another team from the Florida task force to assist in search and rescue operations, said Covey.

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The biggest struck last Tuesday with a 6.4 magnitude.

"No one can predict the exact time or place of an quake, including aftershocks", the USGS cautioned.

Thousands of people are sleeping in shelters or outside, fearing that their homes may collapse during an unexpected quake. She said her administration immediately released $ 2 million to six of the hardest hit communities. This has led one expert to label the infrastructure problem an "educational crisis".

Puerto Rico Governor Wanda Vázquez and U.S. Senator Rick Scott on Friday toured the Costa Sur plant in Guayanilla and spoke to U.S. President Donald Trump by telephone about recovery efforts. A newspaper on the island put the figure at $460 million.

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Puerto Rican Gov. Wanda Vazquez declared a state of emergency last week and is seeking the us government to declare the earthquakes a major disaster, which would free up more federal funding for aid as damage as of last week totaling up to $110 million.

The earthquakes have brought renewed attention to squabbling over the $18 billion in federal funds that Congress designated after Hurricane Maria devastated the island in 2017.

"California stands in solidarity with the people of Puerto Rico", said Newsom.

Trump himself has also been criticized for not making any public comments about the earthquakes.

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