VA-TF 2 sheltered in place as Hurricane Maria slams Puerto Rico

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (WVEC) -- A Virginia Beach-based Urban Search and Rescue Team, Virginia Task Force 2, has crews in Puerto Rico assisting with hurricane relief efforts.

They shared pictures on their Facebook page Wednesday of the crew taking cover in a secured location while Hurricane Maria was overhead. 

They shared an update at 9:30 a.m. saying they had limited cell phone service and internet access.

Hurricane Maria slammed into Puerto Rico on Wednesday as more than 11,000 people huddled in shelters and millions more hunkered down for what could be a five-hour barrage of Category 4 winds while the storm grinds its way across the nation.

"God is with us," Gov. Ricardo Rosselló tweeted shortly after Maria made landfall. "We are stronger than any hurricane. Together we will rise."

Rosselló said that up to 90% of the island of 3.5 million people were without power.

Rosselló said more than 11,000 people sought refuge in about 500 shelters prepared by government officials.

Many people opted to ride out the storm in concrete homes and buildings. 

Even though the VA-TF 2 is hunkered down during the storm, they have been hard at work.

They have been preparing logistics and acquired more vehicles. Rescue and search team managers worked with the TFLs to develop mission packages to meet any need or request.

VA-FT's Facebook page says they have been making sure structures and safety have a plan for the team to safely ride out Maria and Plans has packaged all the required manifests and paperwork to meet the needs of the Integrated System Test.

USA Today contributed to this report.

© 2017 WVEC-TV


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