YABUCOA, Puerto Rico — Heavy rains and strong winds hit Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands on Monday, as remnants of the season’s first hurricane tested how far the territories recovered from last year’s storms.
Tropical Storm Beryl diminished after rushing over Dominica and into the eastern Caribbean, but the National Hurricane Center said the remnants still could dump two to three inches of rain on homes in Puerto Rico still damaged by September’s Hurricane Maria.
Forecasters said this could unleash flooding and landslides in Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands.
Officials said 24,000 customers had already lost power across Puerto Rico, and Governor Ricardo Rossello urged people without sturdy roofs to move in with relatives or go to one of 14 government shelters.
Rossello said the rains are likely to continue for 10 to 12 hours, hitting hardest in the east. Large trees have fallen and blocked several roads, one river has burst its banks, and a landslide has been reported in the northern town of Naranjito. So far there are no reports of injuries.