Does Puerto Rico have power? We don't blame you if you can't keep track of the answer. On Thursday, power was restored to approximately 1 million homes and businesses in Puerto Rico after the island experienced an outage Wednesday morning. The Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority (PREPA) says power was restored around 7 a.m. local time. This was the first major outage to knock out power to affect the entire island since Hurricane Maria made landfall in September.
Officials say a contractor using an excavator to remove a collapsed tower, hit a major power line, causing it to fail and knock out power to all of Puerto Rico.
It’s been difficult tracking the status of Puerto Rico’s power grid since the hurricane because of so many smaller outages that have affected the island. So, does Puerto Rico have power? Where does the status of the island’s power gird stand right now?
Does Puerto Rico have power now?
On Wednesday, a contractor operating an excavator knocked down a power line, causing approximately 1.4 million people to lose electricity. The blackout was the first to spread through the entire island since the storm on September 20.
As of Thursday afternoon, The Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority tweeted that service has been restored to 97 percent of their customers despite some pushback from people on Twitter, claiming that many areas are still left in the dark.
AEE Informa: Se restablece el servicio eléctrico a todos los clientes que ya estaban energizados antes de la interrupción general de ayer. Regresamos al 97.2% de los clientes con servicio en toda la Isla. Seguimos... CC1 #hastallegar100— AEE (@AEEONLINE) April 19, 2018
A week before yesterday, Puerto Rico experienced power failure that left approximately 870,000 people in the dark, according to the New York Times.
According to NPR, approximately 11 percent of Puerto Rico still doesn’t have power after the hurricane that hit the island seven months ago in a March 7 report.
Residents in some rural areas of Puerto Rico have no idea when power will be restored and are losing faith in their government.
“People have been waiting for power to be restored for seven months now, and it’s horrible that in many rural towns, they don’t even have an end-date to this power cut, so there’s no way people can trust what the government is saying,” said Carla Minet, exectutive director of the Center for Investigative Journalism in Puerto Rico to Public Radio International. "It seems they’ve been so aloof on the issue of the past months. People have no trust in them.”
Keep checking back with Metro US for updates about whether Puerto Rico finally has power restored to the entire island.