Trump says supplies streaming into storm-tossed Puerto Rico

People line up to fill jugs with drinking water outside a police station in Juncos Puerto Rico Sept. 24 2017. Hurricane Maria lashed Puerto Rico as a strong Category 4 storm causing widespread damage and leaving the island without power. (Victor J. Bl

"It will go into effect immediately", White House press secretary Sarah Sanders tweeted Thursday morning.

Earlier this week, Mr Trump sent "America's hearts and prayers" to the people in Puerto Rico and the nearby US Virgin Islands, along with his confirmation he will visit both places next week.

Last night, the chairman of the American Maritime Partnership told CBS4 News, shippers were not in favor of waiving the act. The move comes after criticism that the White House has been slow to act to help Puerto Rico recover from the devastation of Hurricane Maria.

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However, other people were able to provide a more convincing reason why more ships weren't necessary-videos like the one below show that aid is being delivered to Puerto Rico, but their infrastructure is so devastated they can't take supplies from the port to more remote areas. The entire island is in a communications and power blackout, Washingon Post reporters there say: "Estimates for the return of electricity and basic services will be measured not in days but in weeks and months". The agency quoted a spokesman for a Florida-based shipping company as saying thousands of 20-foot containers of food, water and soap were piling up at docks in the Puerto Rican capital, San Juan.

Donald Trump has announced he will allow foreign owned ships to deliver relief supplies from U.S. ports to Puerto Rico following a furore over his previous comments that it would upset American shipping firms.

The US waived the Jones Act during the recent Hurricanes Harvey and Irma to help ships quickly reach Texas and Florida.

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"Now Congress must repeal this law to aid long-term recovery", McCain wrote.

"The electric power grid in Puerto Rico is totally shot".

"The food is here, the water is here". The military had delivered fuel to nine hospitals and helped establish more than 100 distribution centers for food and water on the island, the Pentagon said on Thursday. Five of six priority sea ports were open, although some had restrictions on the size of the vessel or were for daylight use only, the Pentagon said.

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The $40 million in "quick release" funds is meant to restore essential traffic on Puerto Rico's roads and limit further damage, in order to facilitate long-term fix work and recovery efforts. That means goods going from the mainland to Puerto Rico, Hawaii, Alaska and Guam, or even from Texas to New England, have to travel on US ships, even if they're not the most economical transport or readily available.

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