AvGeek Airlift for Puerto Rico


The destruction in Puerto Rico from Hurricane Maria is nothing short of devastating. Some 3.4 million residents are without power and running water. Access to communications and basic infrastructure is terribly limited. And the recovery process will be measured in months to years, not days to weeks. The fact that it is an island makes recovery all that much harder. Planes and ships are the only option for delivering supplies and the infrastructure to receive them lies somewhere between limited access and trashed. It turns out being an AvGeek means making a lot of connections with people in the aviation industry (duh!) and in times of crisis like this calling on those connections can bring about huge and positive results.

Welcome to Operation Puerto Rico Care-Lift

Thanks to cooperation between Discovery’s Lara Richardson, 2C Creative’s Chris and Carla Sloan, CargoNationExpress and hundreds of others around the country a convoy of relief flights is gearing up to deliver supplies to the island. DC-3s and Convairs will soon be flying in cargo from South Florida to either Aguadilla or Mayaguez where a distribution team of locals awaits or, if those airports remain unusable, to Isla Grande or SJU in San Juan. No matter what the resources are headed into the hands of the Puerto Rican people who so desperately need them.

And you can help.

The group needs help with stocking the planes. There is a wishlist on Amazon (use your favorite click-through portal to get the points) and goods can be delivered to the 2C Media offices in South Florida (details below). Or you can donate cash so that the team can buy the supplies it needs. EVERYTHING helps. Even just a little bit.

If you are in Miami, you can bring supplies to 2C at:

12550 Biscayne Blvd, Suite 700

North Miami, FL 33181

Attn: Nikki Coloma, 305-672-8229.

You can also send goods to 2C at the above address via walmart.com or amazon.com. Check out an Amazon wishlist of needed supplies before shipping.

Items included are Pedialyte/Gatorade (POWDER ONLY!), personal care kits (toothpaste, tooth brushes, tampons, soap, shampoo), water purification tablets, diapers, flashlights, small radios (solar/battery operated), small tents, sleeping bags, mosquito repellent/bug spray, canned non-perishable foods, first aid kits, baby formula, gloves, hand sanitizer, trash bags and towels.

UPDATE from the organizers:

At this time, we have closed our Amazon Wish list and have suspended accepting physical supplies for the time being due to the overwhelming volume. We estimate we are up to 50,000 pounds of supplies – enough to fill 5 Airbus A321’s.

We are still accepting monetary donations which will aid in our distribution and will be converted into supplies one the grounds and gift cards to Wal-Mart, Home Depot, and Walgreens when they have re-opened.

When we can handle more, we will re-institute our physical donations.

Please continue to donate and don’t delay as TIME IS OF THE ESSENCE.

I hope you’ll join me in supporting this effort.

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Seth Miller

I'm Seth, also known as the Wandering Aramean. I was bit by the travel bug 30 years ago and there's no sign of a cure. I fly ~200,000 miles annually; these are my stories. You can connect with me on Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn.

12 Comments

  1. Is there any hope for getting ppl off the island? There are thousands of ppl lining up at the airport (with no ac or water) every morning to be sent out every night when curfew begins. The shelters are packed and businesses arent accepting cc so cash is running out. We are all having flights cancelled left and right and are told that FEMA is in charge of who gets out. The earliest we have been given is Oct 6th. And thats not a guarantee.

    1. I know that work is being done to try to get a power generator in to bring the radar service back online for the air traffic control services (https://twitter.com/AirlineFlyer/status/912503333167931392). Without that operational the operations are way more limited. I also know that a lot of the flight operations are cargo, not passenger, because of the uncertainty about the operations. There are passenger planes coming in now a handful of times each day but even the largest only carry a couple hundred people. It is really hard to move that many people quickly.

  2. The Amazon wishlist of needed supplies link no longer works. Is there a newer wishlist you can link to? Thanks!

    1. Dave:

      I just updated the post with additional details from the organizers. They have sufficient cargo to fill five(!!) planes now and are shifting gears to collect money to directly help those on the ground rebuild when the time comes. See the notes at the end of the updated post and thanks!

      1. Seth: Many thanks for the update. I’ve sent them some cash. And many, many, thanks for drawing our attention to this outstanding operation!

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