The electricity might be off for months in Puerto Rico following the destruction from Hurricane Maria, Governor Ricardo Rossello says.
A full 100 percent of the island – which is home to 3.5 million people — was without electricity on Thursday afternoon, The New York Times reported. The blackout is so widespread because Hurricane Irma already had knocked out 70 percent of the island’s power.
“Irma gave us a break, but Maria destroyed us,” San Juan resident Edwin Serrano told The Times.
Maria was the strongest hurricane to hit Puerto Rico since 1932, and the devastation on the island is far from over.
All of Puerto Rico was under a flood warning Thursday because of storm surges in the sea and up to 35 inches of rain.
Power Grid Destroyed
“It’s a good time for dads to buy a ball and a glove and change the way you entertain your children,” Ricardo Ramos of Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority told CNN.
President Trump said Thursday that Puerto Rico’s power grid is down.
“It wasn’t in good shape to start off with. But their electrical grid is totally destroyed, and so are many other things,” Trump said.
It will take more than a month to restore electricity to the island, said Jenniffer González-Colón, Puerto Rico’s non-voting representative to the U.S. House. Power lines all over the island are on the ground.
Many families will be without running water for months because the pumps that supply the water system are knocked out, González-Colón added.
“The country is paralyzed — it’s like a war zone,” said real-estate marketer Carmen González. “This has been devastating. The whole of Condado is full of obstacles.”
Telephone service also is out on the island, making the situation worse for millions of Americans who have relatives in Puerto Rico.
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