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Puerto Ricans protest power outages

Cafe employees work with power from a generator during an island-wide blackout in San Juan, Puerto Rico on April 7. Associated Press/Photo by Carlos Giusti, file

Puerto Ricans protest power outages

The island’s residents brought damaged home appliances to San Juan on Thursday in an attempt to make the government cancel its contract with Luma Energy, a private power company that controls the island’s electricity. On some parts of the island, people cannot keep their food or medications refrigerated. The company won the contract last year, but Puerto Rico’s Energy Bureau said outages have increased every month since January. The government gave Luma Energy until Sept. 1 to explain before imposing penalties.

What has Luma said? It said the outages are a product of the island’s poorly maintained power grids and damage from Hurricane Maria in 2017. The company recently pledged to dedicate more crews and resources to fix the problem. It also said it will try to remove vegetation covering 20 of the most critical transmission lines.

Dig deeper: From the WORLD archives, read Sarah Schweinsberg’s report on The World and Everything in It podcast about companies trying to get the internet to places like Puerto Rico.

Mary Muncy

Mary Muncy is a breaking news reporter for WORLD. She graduated from World Journalism Institute and Patrick Henry College.

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