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Tue Sept 19 2017 17:03:01

Hurricanes Impact Puerto Rico, Virgin Islands, East Coast

By: Ina Steiner

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Sales of water, batteries, and emergency supplies may be doing well in certain parts of the country thanks to Harvey, Irma, Jose, and Maria, but the spate of major hurricanes is troubling not only for the risk to life they pose, but for the long-lasting devastation they leave behind them - and it's unclear how that might impact ecommerce in the weeks and months ahead.

Many people were spared the worst from some of these unusually harsh storms, but it's a good bet numerous small sellers continue to deal with damaged homes, electricity outages - and disruptions to shipping.

The USPS continues to provide updates - its main notification page said today: 

"Extremely dangerous Category 5 Hurricane Maria is taking aim at storm-weary  Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands. The hurricane is expected to begin approaching the Virgin Islands tonight and Puerto Rico tomorrow morning.

"Hurricane Jose is expected to remain offshore but will produce coastal flooding, high surf, tropical storm-force winds and heavy rain along parts of the East Coast. The Category 1 hurricane is expected to come closest to the U.S. mainland mid-week.

"Many postal facilities on Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands were affected by Hurricane Irma, and have been returning to service. With the approach of Hurricane Maria imminent, USPS has closed all postal facilities in Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands."

You can find specifics by clicking on "Service Disruption Alerts." Please be sensitive to where your trading partners are located, and as always, stay safe!

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