Harvey was a Category 4 hurricane when it struck Texas and the Gulf of Mexico on August 25-30. Wind gusts from Harvey reached 100mph. Harvey distinguished itself by its relentless rainfall, reaching an all-time record of 51 inches. Numerous flash flood emergencies and surges left most of the area under water. 27 trillion gallons of rain were dumped over a period of six days. More than 72,000 people required rescue. Temporary shelter will be needed for 30,000 people. It is estimated that losses from Harvey will amount to $75 billion.
Hurricane Irma is the strongest Atlantic hurricane on record. The storm spent three days as a Category 5. Winds topped 185 mph, the strongest ever recorded. This led to the largest evacuation in history.
Irma first hit land on September 6th, decimating the Caribbean Island of Barbuda. It then continued it destructive path across Antigua, St. Barthelemy, St. Martin, Anguilla, the U.S. Virgin Islands and Turks & Caicos. Several islands, including Barbuda and St. Martin, have lost over 90% of their infrastructure. Homelessness, food insecurity and looting are major issues.
Irma’s impact covered 90% of the State of Florida. It first hit land in the Keys and turned streets in Miami into raging rivers as floodwaters surged. Devastating storm surges battered coastlines, particularly from Naples up through Tampa and Jacksonville. Winds howled like jet engines. Tornado warnings were issued all evening. Over six million residents were without power. The states of Georgia, Alabama, Tennessee and South Carolina also experienced effects from Irma. Damage is still being assessed but it is estimated that it will be in the billions.
Less than two weeks after areas in the Caribbean were hit by Hurricane Irma, Maria moved in as a Category 5 hurricane. It has caused devastation as it moved through the Caribbean.
On the tiny island of Dominica, the storm killed 15 and destroyed everything within its path. The Prime Minister called it “mind-boggling’ damage. Estimates are that 90% of the island was destroyed.
The storm smashed into Puerto Rico as a Category 4 hurricane, the strongest to hit the island in nearly a century. Officials are describing conditions as “apocalyptic”. The island was left without communications, water or power and much of its infrastructure is gone. Adding to the crisis is the insecurity of a dam which is on the verge of collapse.
The need for food, water, medical supplies and basic health supplies is severe. The University is partnering with City, State and relief agencies to try to assist.
Make a Tax-Deductible Donation to assist in the aftermath of Hurricanes Harvey, Irma, Maria and the Earthquake in Mexico
CUNY has established a fund for charitable donations to assist in the aftermath of the tragedy. Tax-deductible donations can be made via check or money order payable to CUNY Research Foundation with memo indicating “Disaster Relief Fund 78511-00-15”. The money collected will be distributed to a reputable agency providing direct support to the victims.
Mail donations to:
The City University of New York
205 East 42 Street, 9th floor
New York, NY 10017