The weather disturbance bearing down on the Virgin Islands strengthened into Tropical Storm Maria Saturday afternoon and may be a category three hurricane by the time it reached the territory Wednesday.
With heavy rains inundating the territory the past few days and another storm or even two heading our way, the many people on St. Thomas and St. John with damaged roofs on their homes and businesses have been heading to distribution points --- and finding no tarps.
As of Saturday morning, St. Thomas residents will be able pick up and ship mail, at least to some degree, in some locations, according to the U.S. Postal Service. New mail is coming in and money order services are starting Saturday.
A tropical disturbance around 1100 miles east of the Windward Islands and a bit further east of the U.S. Virgin Islands, is producing heavy showers and thunderstorms and is on a path to affect the territory, according to the National Hurricane Center.
The combined resources of the local and federal governments along with private contributions, will help get the territory through its recovery, but Gov. Kenneth Mapp cautioned Thursday that the road forward is not a sprint but a "long haul."
The Estate Tutu Apartments were profoundly damaged during Hurricane Irma last week and its residents will have to be moved to other locations in the coming weeks, Gov. Kenneth Mapp said during his Thursday hurricane recovery update.