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The government of Puerto Rico on Tuesday released additional data on the number of deaths that occurred on the island in the wake of devastating Hurricane Maria in September 2017.
CNN and the Center for Investigative Journalism in Puerto Rico had been suing the government for death certificates and other records following the storm, which struck on Sept. 20.
According to CNN, government officials planned to make at least 1,000 death certificates available on Tuesday and 24,000 available over the course of five days.
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The release of new data comes several weeks after a Harvard study estimated that there were more than 4,600 “excess deaths” on the island from Sept. 20 to Dec. 31. A likely number, the study said, was around 5,000.
The official death toll provided by government officials remains at 64, which the study authors called a “substantial underestimate.”
The government says it believes more than 64 people died in the storm, but it will not raise its official death toll until a study by George Washington University that’s being conducted on behalf of the government is completed, according to the Associated Press.
According to the AP, a primary factor in the discrepancy in the death toll is the fact that there is no uniform definition between the federal government and U.S. states and territories on what constitutes a storm-related death.
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The southeastern United States is facing the risk for damaging thunderstorms this weekend.
A pattern of persistent downpours, beginning with a rainstorm this weekend is likely to disrupt travel, hinder outdoor plans and projects and put summer heat on hold in the Northeast into early August.
Gusty winds caused blowing dust to sweep across the Las Vegas area on Saturday, creating dangerous conditions for travelers.
Near-record heat will set the stage for a heightened risk of wildfires in the southwestern United States, including Southern California, this week.
The intense record heat baking the south-central United States is expected to get trimmed back early this week, but a sweep of refreshing air is not on the horizon.
A deadly heat wave is expected to continue into early week across Japan as Ampil bypasses the region to the south.
An uptick in monsoon rainfall is expected to heighten the flood threat across eastern and northern India this week.