top of page

Maria -
Puerto Rico

Hurricane Maria struck Puerto Rico as a Category 3 storm in September 2017, only weeks after Hurricane Harvey hit Texas. Maria killed 2,975 people in Puerto Rico, making it the deadliest hurricane to hit the United States since 1900. It took 11 months to restore power to the island, the largest blackout in U.S. history.

HurricaneMaria_Corozal-Puerto Rico_Year2018-iStock-903201258.jpg

Storm Facts

  • Impacted Area: Puerto Rico, 2017

  • Total Individual Assistance Applications: 1,106,168

Key Insights from this Dashboard

  • Devastation was widespread, with almost the entire island recording substantial damage. There were 1.1 million FEMA applications on an island with 1.22 million households; or 90 applications per 100 households.

  • Relative to the mainland United States, Puerto Rico has much higher social vulnerability. Many census tracts have a poverty rate over 40%.

  • Some FEMA maps showed damage concentrated in San Juan and other cities. However, damage was most severe in the mountainous interior of Puerto Rico.

  • FEMA only mapped damage that its inspectors had looked at, but the metric of raw applications is more accurate since FEMA inspectors were often unable to reach areas of the island that had been cut off by landslides, power failures, and damaged cell phone towers.

Hurricane Maria.PNG
bottom of page