WASHINGTON: US Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Xavier Becerra declared a public health emergency for Puerto Rico on Wednesday due to the flooding impact of Hurricane Fiona.
The HHS said it had deployed a 15-person health and medical task force and a 10-person incident management team to the U.S. territory.
Hurricane Fiona made landfall on Puerto Rico on Sunday as a Category 1 hurricane, bringing heavy rains, catastrophic damage, and an island-wide blackout.
Localized flash and urban flooding due to swells continue to affect the island, which has over 3 million residents.
More than 1 million customers in Puerto Rico were still without power as of Wednesday noon, according to poweroutage.us.
Hurricane Fiona, which has strengthened into a Category 4 storm, is approaching Bermuda, according to the US National Hurricane Center.