Bronx officials step up to help Puerto Rico

Posted: Updated:

As the island of Puerto Rico remains in a state of emergency following two powerful earthquakes, Bronx residents are stepping up in an effort to help.

A 5.8 magnitude earthquake struck before dawn on Monday, followed by a 6.4 magnitude earthquake Tuesday morning. It killed one person and injured at least nine others.

Both earthquakes happened less than 24 hours apart. Many on the island were forced to sleep outside last night without electricity or water, and a good amount of homes crumbled to pieces.

This was the island's strongest reported earthquake in a century. "I have family over there and I feel bad for my family and others too because it's a very bad crisis," said Council Member Rafael Salamanca Jr.

Salamanca Jr. of the 17th Council District immediately reached out to several politicians in Puerto Rico, eager to help. "When we asked them what do you need right now? What can we do for you right now--they said pray for us," said Salamanca Jr.

Salamanca Jr. also wrote a letter to Mayor Bill de Blasio asking his administration to send a team partially made up of building inspectors "to assist in the response and recovery efforts."

Salamanca Jr., Councilman Ruben Diaz Jr. and Assemblyman Marcus Crespo have scheduled a day of giving event on Jan. 18.

Residents tell News 12 they are keeping Puerto Rico in their prayers. They also say they are planning on doing their part and donating.

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