More than 250,000 Puerto Ricans are without water and another 500,000 are without power after the U.S. territory was struck by a 6.4 magnitude earthquake just before dawn on Tuesday, according to the Associated Press.
The quake was the strongest to hit Puerto Rico since 1918, when a 7.3 magnitude quake rattled the northwest coast, releasing a tsunami that killed 116 people.
Guánica, a small southwest coastal town with a population around 15,000, received the brunt of the quake's force. Approximately 150 homes were damaged, as well as three schools.
"We are confronting a crisis worse than Hurricane Maria," Mayor Santos Seda said referencing the devastating storm that hit the island in 2017. "I am asking for empathy from the federal government."
Tuesday's earthquake was the culmination of a series of over 950 quakes and aftershocks since December 31, 2019, according to U.S. Geologic Survey.