All Of Puerto Rico Without Electricity

( Puerto Rico was plunged into darkness on Sunday when Hurricane Fiona made landfall, leaving the entire island without power amid hurricane-force winds and catastrophic flooding.

As the hurricane made its way to the island, government officials said they were prepared to evacuate residents in the areas hardest hit.

But “prepared” might have been an overstatement.

In a statement late Sunday night, the government estimated about 196,000 people were without potable water and nearly 1.5 million were left without power. About one in five cell phone towers were inoperable. Officials said 1,033 evacuees had been placed in 130 shelters set up for the hurricane.

Hurricane Fiona brought winds of about 85 mph as the storm dumped between 9 and 13 inches of rain in just five hours. Flash flooding and urban flooding throughout Puerto Rico and the eastern Dominican Republic caused mudslides and landslides in higher terrain areas.

By Friday, half of Puerto Rico still remained without power, prompting growing anger and frustration from residents who called for the ouster of Luma, Puerto Rico’s private electricity transmission and distribution company.

Luma insists that they have plenty of personnel to make the necessary repairs but flooding has left several substations underwater making them inaccessible.

Fuel disruptions compounded the situation as grocery stores, gas stations, and other businesses were forced to close due to a lack of diesel to power generators.

The lack of power is also linked to several deaths. Officials reported that a 70-year-old man burned to death while attempting to fill his generator with gas while it was in operation. Another man died from inhaling toxic gases from his generator. And on Friday, a 72-year-old man and a 93-year-old woman who were using candles for light both died after their house caught fire.

Puerto Rican residents believe there is plenty of blame to go around.

Marcel Castro-Sitiriche, an electoral engineering professor, told the Associated Press this was a disaster caused by the Puerto Rican government, Luma, and the Electric Power Authority.

But unlike Hurricane Maria in 2017, this time, no show-boating Puerto Rican politicians are appearing on CNN to lay the blame on the sitting president.