Maria restrengthens to a Category 3 storm
Puerto Rico's governor says a man died after he was hit by debris
Puerto Rico’s energy grid took such a severe blow from deadly Hurricane Maria that restoring power to everyone may take months, Gov. Ricardo Rosselló told CNN on Wednesday night.
The entire system is down, the governor said. No one on the island has power from utilities.
Puerto Rico, which has been through a long recession and is deeply in debt, has a power grid that is “a little bit old, mishandled and weak,” Rosselló told “Anderson Cooper 360˚.”
“It depends on the damage to the infrastruacture,” he said. “I’m afraid it’s probably going to be severe. If it is … we’re looking at months as opposed to weeks or days.”
The impact of the storm on the island territory won’t be realized until officials can do a flyover and see what remains.
Rosselló said officials think some power stations are not badly damaged, but the distribution system is ruined. If transmission lines are in better shape than thought, power outages might be fixed sooner, the governor said.
Rosselló told CNN that at least one person died in the storm when a board was ripped from the house it had been nailed to by the wind and hit a man. The governor said the number of casualties in some areas is unknown because it is hard to communicate.
“We still don’t have a lot of information,” he said. “We’re virtually disconnected in terms of communications with the southeast part of the island.”