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Response to riversedge (Reply #5)

Thu Sep 13, 2018, 10:23 AM

11. Over 900 bodies were cremated after the hurricane .... wiki


During a press conference on October 3, 2017, President Donald Trump applauded the low death toll—at the time the government only certified 16 deaths—and claimed it was nothing like the "catastrophe" caused by Hurricane Katrina in 2005. San Juan Mayor Yulín Cruz harshly criticized Trump as "killing [Puerto Ricans] with the inefficiency [of relief efforts]. Following the visit by Trump, concerns over political motivations in the handling of relief efforts surged. The magnitude of devastation proved to be an unprecedented challenge for relief efforts by the Army Corps of Engineers and FEMA. Senator Kamala Harris claimed that "the government failed Puerto Rico at every level in the wake of Hurricane Maria".

Between September 20 and October 18, the island's only medical examiner authorized 911 bodies for cremation; however, they were not physically examined and simply given "natural causes" as the cause of death.[15] Official statistics showed increases of about 20% and 27% in overall fatalities in Puerto Rico during September 2017, compared to 2016 and 2015, followed by a decrease of about 10% in October 2017 compared to the previous two Octobers.

snip

Through at least June 2018, hundreds of unclaimed bodies remained in morgues, and the island's primary morgue was "overflowing" with them.[13] A total of 307 bodies were stored at the San Juan morgue and four refrigerators in a nearby lot. Staff shortages resulting from budget cuts further complicated the situation as bodies were unable to be processed in a timely fashion.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hurricane_Maria_death_toll_controversy

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