By Associated Press - Monday, October 2, 2017

CHICAGO (AP) - Illinois-based companies and emergency responders are helping with the relief effort in Puerto Rico following Hurricane Maria.

Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel said Monday that the city’s fire department will send nearly two dozen firefighters, paramedics and engineers to Puerto Rico this week with stretchers, defibrillators and other supplies. They’re expected to spend 10 days there to help.

Emanuel and U.S. Rep. Luis Gutierrez have coordinated with Chicago-based United Airlines to deliver supplies. The city also welcomed evacuees arriving last week at O’Hare International Airport.

Gutierrez’s family is from Puerto Rico. The Democrat returned Sunday from a visit there. He says there’s still an immediate need for help from the federal government.

Gov. Bruce Rauner says over 550 Illinois National Guardsmen are on alert and ready for deployment if they’re needed.

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