World 22.9.2016 12:05 pm

Fire leaves 1.5 mn without power in Puerto Rico

Fire-fighters

Fire-fighters

A fire at a power station in Puerto Rico has left much of the island in darkness and some 1.5 million people without electricity.

Officials at the US territory’s government-run energy company said the blackout, which hit mid-afternoon on Wednesday, could last 24 hours or longer.

It occurred after a fire at the Aguirre power plant run by Puerto Rico’s Electrical Energy Authority (AEE.)

Governor Alejandro Garcia Padilla at a press conference Wednesday called the blackout “a major event that will take many hours” to fix, according to the daily El Nuevo Dia.

Padilla said schools and government offices may also be forced to remain closed on Thursday if the outage persists.

The power cut has forced businesses across the US territory, home to some 3.7 million people, to temporarily shutter.

Since many of Puerto Rico’s water plants run on electricity, the blackout also has affected the water supply in some areas, news reports there said.

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