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Intersection: The State of Puerto Rico 10 Months After Hurricane Maria

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Photo: Concilio.

Nearly 10 months after Hurricane Maria, Puerto Ricans prepared for another storm. Beryl rolled over Puerto Rico where thousands of people lost power again.

Wilton Vargas, the editor of the technology website tecnetico.com, lives in San Juan. He says the state of the island isn’t what it seems.

“If you stay in the metro area, you’ll think that everything has returned to normal and everything is okay and we’re back to our old selves,” Vargas says. “It’s far from normal if you go beyond the surface.”

He says if another hurricane were to hit they are “not prepared.” Most of them get in a state of trepidation at the mention of another storm.

“If you look at the way people react, there is no confidence in the government to handle anything that might come our way. That explains why people reacted the way they reacted when Beryl threatened us,” Vargas says.

“Even the mention, the thought, the possibility of being hit, it will send people running and reacting to whatever it is that they have to do in order to get ready for whatever it is that is coming,” Vargas says.

Vargas says as Puerto Ricans he believes they have PTSD and that it isn’t talked about enough.

“If we don’t get that taken care of and have our emotions come out and just let it all out, then I think we’re going to be just reacting to stuff instead of responsibly preparing and just accepting it as a part of life living in the Caribbean,” Vargas says.

“This affects people deeply, this affects a person deeply, and in my case I’m still dealing with the effects of it.”

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