About 233,000 still without power in Puerto Rico days after Fiona




  • In US
  • 2022-09-30 12:50:29Z
  • By Reuters
 

NEW YORK (Reuters) - An estimated 233,000 homes and businesses were still without power in Puerto Rico on Friday almost two weeks after Hurricane Fiona caused an island-wide outage for its 3.3 million people.

After hitting Puerto Rico and the Dominican Republic, Fiona turned north and slammed into eastern Canada on Sept. 24, leaving more than a third of Nova Scotia without power.

Nova Scotia Power, a unit of Canadian energy company Emera Inc, said about 59,900 customers were without power in the province early Friday, down from about 78,200 early Thursday.

Fiona hit Puerto Rico on Sept. 18 about five years after Hurricane Maria knocked out all power on the island.

PowerOutage.us said about 233,000 customers were without service in Puerto Rico on Friday, down from around 239,000 early Thursday, based on information from LUMA Energy, which operates its grid.

That pace of restoration was much faster than after Maria - when almost all 1.5 million customers had no power for a week. At that time the now bankrupt Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority (PREPA) was still operating the grid.

It took PREPA about 11 months to restore power to all customers, but Maria was a much more powerful storm than Fiona.

Maria hit Puerto Rico in 2017 as a Category 4 hurricane with winds of 155 miles (249 kilometers) per hour (mph), while Fiona hit as a Category 1 storm with winds of 85 mph.

LUMA Energy said it restored service to 1.212 million, or about 83% of all customers by early Friday and expects to restore service to 90% of customers in all of its service regions by Oct. 6 so long as sufficient generation is available.

LUMA is a joint venture owned by units of Canadian energy firm ATCO Ltd (50%) and U.S. energy contractor Quanta Services Inc (50%).

(Reporting by Scott DiSavino; Editing by Angus MacSwan)

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