San Juan Assesses Maria's Wrath

 - September 21, 2017, 12:49 PM
A destroyed hangar at San Juan's Fernando Luis Ribas Dominicci Airport (TJIG) poignantly demonstrates the effects of Maria's punishing winds. Yet, some FBOs in the area survived the storm in good shape and were reportedly up and running a day after the Category 4 hurricane swept over Puerto Rico.

One day after Hurricane Maria churned over Puerto Rico, the island awoke today to estimates that it could take months to restore its shattered power grid, which left it in the dark overnight. While communications remain difficult, Signature Flight Support said that its facility at Fernando Luis Ribas Dominicci Airport suffered “significant damage” and that the company is still assessing the situation. Tommy Hill, president of Million Air San Juan, the other service provider there, reported that his FBO is up and running and expected the airport could open today, albeit with no lights or tower.

At San Juan Luis Muñoz Marin International (TJSJ), Jet Aviation San Juan told AIN that the facility suffered “zero-to-minimal” damage and is fully operational on generator power, with an intact fuel supply. The U.S. Customs facility, which shares the new building, is likewise operational. The FBO and its staff are now gearing up for an influx of humanitarian flights. During the two weeks following Irma, the facility handled an average of 55 flights a day, receiving more than 500,000 pounds of relief supplies for distribution throughout the region. Those flights are anticipated to resume on Friday as TJSJ reopens to humanitarian and limited commercial traffic.

Now a Category 3 hurricane, Maria is expected to impact Turks and Caicos and the Bahamas later today.