Official says US can handle Irma relief

ST. JOHN'S, Antigua (AP) - President Donald Trump's homeland security adviser says the government can handle Hurricane Irma relief because the life-saving phase for Hurricane Harvey is over and has entered a longer term phase focused on individuals.

Tom Bossert tells The Associated Press that the victims of Hurricane Harvey in Texas are not being forgotten as Irma hits the Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico and possibly Florida later this week. He says those in the path of the newest storm should heed evacuation orders.

For Harvey, he says the government is working on longer-term assistance, such as Small Business Administration loans, unemployment wages and reconstruction.

The U.S. State Department is warning U.S. citizens to reconsider travel to Cuba, Haiti or the Dominican Republic due to the expected impact of Hurricane Irma.


It notes that the Category 5 storm could bring life-threatening flooding, flash flooding, mudslides, and storm surge, while travel and other services will likely be disrupted.

The department says it has authorized the voluntary departure of U.S. government employees and their family members from the three countries due to the hurricane.

© 2017 Associated Press


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