Puerto Rico’s electric grid recovers after recent territory-wide outage
In the late hours of April 6, 2022, Puerto Rico suffered from a power outage that affected the entire territory. A few weeks have passed and Puerto Rico’s electric grid is still recovering from the power outage. Hundreds of Puerto Rican locals have been without electricity for days, and the territory’s weak power grid is at fault.
Puerto Rico’s Electric Power Company managed the distribution of the islands’ electricity until LUMA took over as Puerto Rico’s new energy distribution company last year. A fire at their main PowerPoint in Southern Puerto Rico, Costa Sur, sparked the power outage. LUMA’s officials didn’t release when they expected their electric grip to be fully-recovered but did advise citizens that their team would be working around the clock.
With the recent territory-wide outage, life seemed to halt across Puerto Rico. Water was shut off for more than 100,000 homes and businesses. Since then, the majority of homes and businesses had restored power and water by Friday, but some still suffered without service for five days.
Schools were canceled and businesses were temporarily closed, many were without water, and residents became increasingly angry at LUMA’s handling of the outage. Locals in Puerto Rico have also become aggravated in the recent year as they’ve reported increases in their power bills since LUMA took over. Angered locals protested against LUMA and its management outside LUMA’s headquarters on Friday, April 8. Many threw out eggs and rotten groceries, due to being unable to refrigerate perishables. The territory-wide outage only further exemplifies the long-lasting effects that natural disasters have had on Puerto Rico. Specifically, after Hurricane Maria in 2017 with its devastating toll on the electrical grid, many desperately needed repairs to infrastructure have still not been made. Puerto Ricans are also concerned with the upcoming Atlantic hurricane season, which starts in roughly two months, and how that will affect the fragility of the power grid.