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Puerto Rico Faces Extensive Damage After Hurricane Maria

Source: Carolyn Cole / Getty

The island of Puerto Rico just can’t seem to catch a break. It’s been several months since Hurricane Maria ravaged the U.S. commonwealth, severely crippling its electrical power grid. The island has slowly been on the mend but suffered a major setback thanks to an islandwide blackout. 

Unbelievable. Meanwhile, President Trump snuck out for cheeseburgers and golf with the Prime Minister of Japan Shinzo Abe.

According to Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority spokesman Geraldo Quiñones López, there was “zero percent” power generation to the island in a statement issued to NBC. He also stated “the breakdown affected the entire electrical system and generating plants” at the time.”

As for the cause of the blackout, a contractor operating a bulldozer to remove a collapsed tower approached a power line causing it to fail. This follows 840,000 being left without power when a tree fell on a power line located in the center of the island. That incident crippled the island to the point that it shut down service to its international airport, Puerto Rico’s largest mall, metro light rail system and San Juan’s largest hospital.

On top of that, a backup line that was supposed to kick in also failed.

As of right now, power has been restored to the Municipalities Maunabo, Naguabo, Mayagüez, Arecibo and Toa Baja. The islands of Culebra and Vieques were not affected. A Major League Baseball game between the Minnesota Twins and Cleveland Indians still took place at Hiram Bithorn Stadium with the help of generators. There are still about 40,000 customers without normal electrical power as a direct result of Hurricane Maria.

The subcontractor that was involved with the last two blackouts has been fired, deservingly so. We just hope the island can hopefully get back to normal.

Photo: Carolyn Cole / Getty