Power outages in Puerto Rico fuel anger, fear
Major power outages across Puerto Rico have surged in recent weeks, fueling anger and fear among residents affected by a situation that the government has called a "crass failure," AP reports.
The big picture: The energy company Luma took over the U.S. territory's power transmission and distribution system on June 1. Since then, customers have complained of an increase in outages.
- The electric company has a 15-year contract with Puerto Rico's government and serves nearly 1.5 million customers.
- Puerto Ricans have protested the privatization of the island's electrical grid since the move was announced in 2018, writes Miami Herald.
Driving the news: Hundreds of Puerto Ricans gathered outside of the governor's mansion in San Juan on Friday, angered by the now-daily outages that residents have likened to the aftermath of Hurricane Maria, per the Miami Herald.
What they're saying: "Every time the power goes out here it pushes your post-traumatic stress button," Manuel Casellas, an attorney who recently served as president of an 84-unit condominium complex, told AP. "You can't live without electricity."
- "This has turned into abuse," said Carmen Cabrer, a 53-year-old Puerto Rico resident, about the outages, per AP. "I'm constantly tense."