A blackout hit the northern part of Puerto Rico as a result of a fire. The occurrence of an explosion and fire at an electric substation put a lot of Puerto Rico under darkness late on Sunday which is actually a massive setback for the efforts of the territory of the United States for the complete restoration of power more than over five months after the devastating Hurricane, Maria marked the beginning of the longest blackout in the history of the United States. The Electric Power Authority of the island of Puerto Rico stated that a number of municipalities were left without power which included some parts of the capital city San Juan as well. The people of the authority were very optimistic and said that the power could be restored within a day as they worked for repairing a substation that controls the voltage.
The blast that took place actually illustrated the challenges and difficulties that are faced while the restoration of a power grid which was already in a crumbling state before it was devastated by the killer Category 4 hurricane, Maria. In a number of cases, power workers are trying their best in repairing the equipment which should have been replaced a long time back but the equipment still remained online because of years of long financial crisis of the power authority Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority is worth roughly about four billion dollars and carries a debt of about nine million dollars which is why it has long been criticized for its inefficiency and political patronage. Moreover, the electric power authority of the nation of Puerto Rico has struggled with frequent blackouts which included an island wide power outage in September, 2016.
The exact cause of the fire that occurred on Sunday was not immediately known. The officials mentioned that the explosion knocked out two other electric substations offline which resulted in a total loss of 400 megawatts of power generation. The officials also stated that they are trying their best for the restoration of power as quickly as possible. Heavy black smoke was seen coming out of the substation which is per the description of the neighbors in the area given on social media. They saw the sky turning orange which was followed by a loud explosion. The Mayor of San Juan Carmen Cruz tweeted that no injuries had been reported as a result of the fire and in some places power has been restored.