The quake, which struck at 4:24am, has caused widespread power outages, seriously damaged homes and buildings, and left much of the island without running water. Several aftershocks, ranging between 4.5 and 5.8, have occurred. This follows a 5.8 earthquake on Monday, January 6, that caused the collapse of Punta Ventana, a natural rock archway that was a major tourist attraction.
Governor Vasquez has declared a state of emergency. The Caribbean is an active seismic zone, and further tremors are possible, as well as the potential for tsunamis. Be prepared for disruptions to travel plans, and contact your travel provider to see if schedules have changed.
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Tropical Storm Dorian has strengthened to a Category 1 hurricane, and is predicted to hit Puerto Rico late this afternoon. While the center of the hurricane may pass to the east of the island, heavy rain is predicted, creating a risk of floods or mudslides, and the storm may strain infrustructure that's still not fully recovered from Hurricane Maria. Always check the latest information from the National Hurricane Center, and keep an eye on local media for the latest updates.
Be aware that now this is a named hurricane and states of emergency have been declared in several places, it may not be possible to purchase travel insurance to cover this event. To discuss your coverage, please contact us at World Nomads.
A tropical storm becomes a hurricane when wind speeds reach 74 mph or greater - Category 1.
A "watch" is issued when hurricane-force winds are possible in the named region (so maybe a hurricance is coming.)
A "warning" is issued when hurricane-force winds are expected in the named region (so a hurricane is definitely coming.)
The absolutely best way to survive a hurricane is to avoid one. Get away from it, but if you make the decision to leave make that decision early. Do not leave it until the last minute because you may find yourself caught without proper shelter.
If you decide to stay and "ride it out" it is advisable to get to an authorized shelter. The locations of these will be broadcast, or locals will know where they are. If there is no shelter, prepare to "shelter in place" in an internal room without windows.
Once a "storm watch" has been issued, make sure you are prepared in the event that the watch becomes a "warning."
During the storm
After the storm
There may be cover for you if you purchased your policy prior to the storm or hurricane being declared. Check your policy or call our customer assistance teams if you are unsure.
Coverage may vary depending on your place of residence and the level of cover you have purchased, however GENERALLY the cover and benefits of Trip Cancellation or Trip Interruption may assist you. If regular carriage services to your destination have ceased for 24 hours or more (so you can't get there) you may be able to make a claim. Check with our customer assistance teams.
Since Hurricane Maria hit Puerto Rico, it has taken some time to get essential services up and running on the island. San Juan has mostly improved; however, many parts of the country are still without sanitation, telecommunications, and other services. Check with your government's travel advisory and Puerto Rico's tourism bureau for more information before you travel.
Hurricane Maria made landfall on Puerto Rico on September 20 as a Category 4 storm, with winds up to 150 miles an hour. The hurricane caused widespread devastation and left almost the entire island without power. It may be months before power is fully restored. Maria also brought nearly 40 inches of rain to some areas of the island, causing severe flooding. More rain is expected through the weekend. Always check the latest information from the National Hurricane Center, and keep an eye on local media for the latest updates.
Category 5 Hurricane Irma passed north of Puerto Rico early this morning - the island was spared a direct hit, but a million people are currently without power. The storm is now heading towards Turks and Caicos, the Bahamas, and the US mainland. Keep an eye on local media for the latest updates.
Travel warnings have been issued for Antigua, Barbuda, Anguilla, Montserrat, St. Kitts, and Nevis, Saba, St. Eustatius, and Sint Maarten, British Virgin Islands, U.S. Virgin Islands, Puerto Rico, Vieques, and Culebra, Dominican Republic from Cabo Engano to the northern border with Haiti, Guadeloupe, Southeastern Bahamas and the Turks and Caicos Islands.
The United States has declared states of emergency in Florida, Georgia, South Carolina, and Puerto Rico.
Along with extremely strong winds, Hurricane Irma is likely to create a storm surge of 11 feet or more, with large, breaking waves. Heavy rains could cause life-threating flash floods and mudslides.
Be aware that now this is a named hurricane and emergencies have been declared in several places it may not be possible to purchase travel insurance to cover this event. To discuss your coverage please contact us at World Nomads.
You can buy at home or while traveling, and claim online from anywhere in the world. With 150+ adventure activities covered and 24/7 emergency assistance.