Hurricane Maria’s devastation last week crippled the island of Puerto Rico, leaving its more than 3.4 million residents without electricity, running water and without communications.
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Families desperately trying to connect with their loved ones are having trouble reaching them as few of the island’s 1,600 cellphone towers are currently operational.
If you’re trying to reach someone in Puerto Rico and have been unable to connect to their cell or home numbers, there are a few additional ways to try.
The Puerto Rico’s government has developed a map of the island’s 12 zones, each with its own municipalities.
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The map shows phone numbers for the municipalities and regions, and, according to the Miami Herald, the numbers will connect you with the nearest Puerto Rico State Agency for Emergency and Disaster Management Office.
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Here are the zones and their corresponding phone numbers as listed in the map:
Zone 1 (San Juan): (787) 294-0277
Zone 2 (Vega Baja): (787)965-7770
Zone 3 (Arecibo): (787)878-3454
Zone 4 (Aguadilla): (787) 882-6871
Zone 5 (Mayaguez): (787) 833-7272 ext. 7372, 9494, 9594
Zone 6 (Ponce): (787)-844-8272
Zone 7 (Utuado): (787) 814-7680
Zone 8 (Comerio): (787)867-7000
Zone 9 (Guayama): (787) 864-1600 ext. 1690
Zone 10 (Caguas): (787) 656-9643 or 787-656-9642
Zone 11 (Humacao): (787) 852-4044
Zone 12 (Ceiba): (787)863-3330
If you don’t know which zone your loved one is in, you can:
- Call the Puerto Rico Federal Affairs Administration’s Washington, D.C. office at (202) 800-3133 or 202-778-0710.
- Call the Puerto Rico government’s radio station (WIPR) at 787-777-0940 or 787-766-0505 and follow the station’s Facebook page for updates.
- Email the Puerto Rico disaster relief team at email@example.com.
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The Puerto Rico disaster team also stated:
Due to the high volume of request being handled by the Disaster Relief Team, we kindly ask you not to send follow-up e-mails, unless your or your loved ones’ information has changed. If you were able to reach your loved ones, please inform us via e-mail as soon as possible.
You can also use the American Red Cross’ Safe and Well online database, which is available in both English and Spanish.
The online tracker allows people to search for loved ones or mark themselves as safe.
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You may also find answers by posting your questions on the Noticias 24/7 Facebook page or the PR Informa Facebook page.
According to fact-check site Snopes.com, people have also recommended the open Facebook group Huracán María en Puerto Rico and closed Facebook groups Huracan María en San lorenzo, Huracan maria mayaguez puerto rico, and HURACAN MARIA CIDRA.
Have you found other successful means of communicating with loved ones in Puerto Rico? Please let us know in the comments.