Storm response in Puerto Rico 'incredibly successful,' blames mayor for Hurricane Maria

Resident Mirian Medina stands on her property about two weeks after Hurricane Maria swept through the island

The president raised eyebrows Tuesday when he touted the response efforts in a meeting to go over preparations for the potentially devastating Hurricane Florence inching toward the Carolinas.

"As President Trump brags about his handling of the hurricane in Puerto Rico", Meyers said, "it's becoming clearer than ever that there are no adults around Trump to control his worst impulses".

Santana, who posted the photos to his Facebook on Tuesday, said he first saw the bottles there in either October or November of previous year.

Cruz went after Trump on Twitter after the president told reporters that "Puerto Rico was an incredible, unsung success" without mentioning the staggering new death toll of nearly 3,000 Americans. "It's tremendously big and tremendously wet", he said.

A CBS reporter who picked up on the viral photos of the unused water bottles confirmed that they were brought to the island and turned over to Puerto Rico's central government.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) in a statement on Wednesday said it, "purchased the water as part of its supplies and determined there was a surplus" before making the water "available to any agency that needed it".

The report found Puerto Rico's emergency-supply warehouses were almost empty when Hurricane Maria hit in October, without things like cots or tarps, because numerous supplies had been rerouted to the U.S. Virgin Islands. While 25 per cent of Harvey loans were OKed within 42 days, for Maria, that didn't happen until January 9, more than three months after the storm hit. During a visit to the island last September, Trump tossed paper towels into a crowd and told Puerto Rican officials that they should be proud the damage did not compare to the havoc wreaked by Hurricane Katrina in 2005, which he described as a "real catastrophe".

This time - as Florence and a series of other storms barrel toward the U.S. - FEMA says it's prepared, even as the agency defends its 2017 response. It also led to criticism of FEMA, which is now preparing for Hurricane Florence set to hit the Carolinas and Virginia later this week. "We are planning for devastation". Long said that the expectation is that it will make landfall.

Islanders have also been angered by recent discoveries of supplies that never got delivered.

"It's very risky" to remain, Trump added.

"Success? Federal response according to Trump in Puerto Rico a success?"

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