EA week after Hurricane Fiona hit Puerto Rico, hundreds of thousands of people have not had power restored. Around 44 percent of the connections still had no power on Sunday, according to a tweet from the electricity provider Luma Energy. According to the AAA water authority, the water supply had not yet been restored for 19 percent of the connections. Some people are still cut off from the outside world, said civil protection chief Nino Correa in a Facebook video.
Almost exactly five years ago, the devastating hurricane “Maria” hit the Caribbean US territory with a good three million inhabitants and cost the lives of almost 3,000 people. Puerto Rico’s infrastructure was still suffering when the center of “Fiona” made landfall on September 18 as a category one of five hurricane. Floods, landslides and destruction occurred. The US government promised quick help.
According to a statement from the Puerto Rico Department of Health on Saturday, quoted by local media, 16 deaths have been recorded in connection with Hurricane Fiona. One of them was directly and three indirectly caused by the storm, the remaining twelve are being investigated. Agriculture Minister Ramón González Beiró estimated the damage caused to agriculture at more than 100 million US dollars (103 million euros) on Sunday, as reported by the newspaper “El Nuevo Día”.
Because of the unreliable energy supply with frequent power cuts and simultaneously rising prices, there had already been protests in Puerto Rico before “Fiona”. According to media reports, anger grew after the storm at the work of the provider Luma Energy – a private company that last year took over the power supply to the island and maintenance of the grid.