Puerto Rico officers say energy again to most after blackout

Rodriguez far right uses his pickup truck to help municipal workers who are also locals move an electric post so they can install it near a home in the El Ortiz sector of Coamo Puerto Rico Jan. 31 2018

SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico - Officials with Puerto Rico's power company said Monday that they have restored power to most customers who were hit by a blackout overnight after a fire at a substation, a setback that added to the USA territory's struggle to recover from Hurricane Maria and years of deteriorating infrastructure.

The island's utility company said electricity had been restored to 75% capacity after Hurricane Maria decimated the USA territory in late September.

San Juan Mayor Carmen Yulín Cruz tweeted that no injuries have been reported yet and that firefighters were sent to the scene.

The state electric power authority (AEE) said the blast was caused by a broken-down switch in Rio Piedras, resulting in a blackout in central San Juan and Palo Seco in the north.

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She told CNN that light was already beginning to return to several areas, but that she didn't know the percentage of people with or without power in San Juan.

The blackout marks a setback in efforts to restore power to Puerto Rico, five months after Hurricane Maria wreaked widespread devastation and led to the longest blackout in US history.

"It appears fire has nearly totally been extinguished and the cooling phase is beginning". In late January, PREPA issued a statement saying more than 450,000 customers remained without electricity.

Puerto Rico's governor announced last month that he plans to privatize the company, which relies on infrastructure almost three times older than the industry average.

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