As Jim Wyss (Bloomberg) reports, Puerto Rico’s power infrastructure is notoriously fragile, and now, many of the 3.3. million people on the island are without power after a fire at the Costa Sur power plant.
Much of Puerto Rico remained without power early Thursday after a fire at the Costa Sur power plant plunged the U.S. territory of 3.3 million people into darkness.
The Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority, or Prepa, said a fire at the plant shortly after 9 p.m. local time had triggered emergency shut-offs at other units.
Grid operator Luma Energy said in a statement that it was beginning to restore service to the southeast side of the island, but “given the size and scope of the outage, power restoration could extend well into” Thursday.
Puerto Rico has one of the most expensive and least reliable electricity service of any U.S. jurisdiction and power outages are common. In addition, Prepa, the island’s public utility and main power generator, is working through bankruptcy.
Governor Pedro Pierluisi, who is in Spain on official business, called for calm and said crews would prioritize bringing hospitals and other key infrastructure online first.
[Photo above by Ricardo Arduengo/AFP. Puerto Rican flags hang from a balcony in San Juan, Puerto Rico after a major power outage hit the island on April 6, 2022.]