Here’s How You Can Help Four Women Trapped In St. Martin Due To Hurricane Irma

September 10, 2017  |  

Unless you’ve been hiding under a rock, then you’ve more than likely heard the devastating news of Hurricane Irma. While the Category 5 storm is passing through the southern tip of Florida, it’s already left a destructive tail across areas of the Caribbean. To date, Saint Martin has been affected the worst.

While many media outlets are reporting that the death toll is raising to double-digits on the island, there are still many fighting to survive with no drinking water, gasoline or electricity.

In particular, a New York City woman named Tiffany Bender and her three friends who took a trip to St. Martin during Hurricane Irma are currently trapped on the island with no way to get off the island, according to CBS News.

“We are just asking that not just for ourselves — please, please call your local electives, call your assemblymen, call your senators, call your embassies and tell them you have citizens who are stranded here, Anguilla, St. Bart’s and we just need to go home,” Bender told CBSN.

However, with the island sinking, the conditions only continue to get worse. Bender went on to say that the Airbnb hosts told them to “cross our fingers when we asked her about the best practices for the storm.” After contacting the embassy, who supplied them with a list of hotels that still had power, the roof of the Airbnb had caved in from the storm.

In the meantime, the ladies were able to maneuver to a hotel. “One of the hotels that we could have went to were actually across the street is completely wiped away,” Bender continued. “Every single floor was completely dismantled, so it’s really luck of the draw that we picked the hotel that we did.”

Bender described the conditions of the hotel when the storm hit, sharing that nearly two hours into the madness that the 7th floor was flooded.

“From the ceiling, it was coming from the elevator, and at that point we had packed emergency bags with our passports and necessities and we picked up our emergency bags and ran into the staircase where other guests were,” she said. “Again, we were on the 7th floor and the water rose to about the 2nd floor, and at that point we had realized that the roof had come off. Luckily at that time we were going through the eye of the storm so we kind of had this lull moment where maintenance worked as quickly as they could to fix a new roof, where 45 minutes later we had to pass through that second part of the storm and it was just absolutely terrifying.”

Since the Irma hit, Bender did say that the hotel has done a “fantastic job of keeping us safe.” However, the manager of the hotel did warn them that there has been looting and assaulting of women in rooms. “We didn’t have a window in our room, and the locks were broke, so we have been putting chairs under the door and so at that point we made the decision to kind of pack up and head for shelter at the American University.” Nevertheless, the university told them they could only stay one night.

There’s also been a 24-hour curfew put in place, where Bender shared that she and her friends were told that if they go out “you will be shot or detained … verbatim.”

In regards to future plans, Bender could only offer, “we honestly don’t know. We don’t know. We have our family back home and they’re doing what they can but we really don’t know.”

With the ladies still praying and keeping their heads held high, a social media campaign dubbed #savemaarten has started to make way on social media timelines to spread the word about Tiffany and her friends.

Readers, if you have any information that may help the ladies, please reach out to the information provided in the post below.

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