LOS ANGELES (CBSLA) — Hurricane Iota slammed Central America Tuesday after making landfall in Nicaragua as a Category 4 storm — unloading heavy rain and packing winds of 155 miles per hour.
The United Nations warned of catastrophic mudslides and floods in areas still recovering from Hurricane Eta almost two weeks ago.
“We have more than 3 million people affected in total,” Maria Rivera Fiallos, consul general of Honduras in Los Angeles, said. “That is between people who have lost their houses or people that had to be taken to a shelter.”
Rivera Fiallos said Honduras is one of the countries hardest hit by the storms. For the past week, she has been coordinating local relief efforts to send aid and donations to the devastated country.
“We’re focusing more on the personal hygiene products and stuff for babies — powdered milk, diapers, wipes and PPE,” she said. “We also need blankets still, and food, especially canned food or pasta and grains.”
Rivera Fiallos said they also need water filtration devices and personal protective equipment because so many in Honduras now have to stay in shelters.
So far, volunteers have collected enough donations to fill two warehouses, but organizers said they are now facing a logistical roadblock.
“I have talked to so many people in the shipping area in the past three days,” Rivera Fiallos said. “And they all tell me there are no containers in Los Angeles. Apparently it’s taking a lot of time to have a container available.”
Rivera Fiallos said they want to clear the warehouses and collect more needed donations to send to Honduras, which is expected to get hit by more heavy rainfall over the next few days.
“If anybody out there sees or hears this and can help us in getting those four containers, like I said, we are ready to pay for them and to load them as soon as possible,” she said.
There are four drop-off locations throughout the city that will start taking donations again on Saturday:
- Consulado General De Honduras
3550 Wiltshire Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA 90010
- Dona Bibis Restaurant
2400 W 7th St.
Los Angeles, CA 90057
- Rincon Hondureno
1624 W Adams Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA 90007
- La Casa Honduras
9131 Vermont Ave.
Los Angeles, CA 90044