Power largely restored across Puerto Rico after island-wide blackout

National News
Puerto Rico Hurricane Maria_1524075520387

FILE – In this Dec. 21, 2017 filw photo, barrio Patron resident Karina Santiago Gonzalez works on a small power plant in Morovis, Puerto Rico. Puerto Rico authorities said on Friday Dec. 29, that nearly half of power customers in the U.S. territory still lack electricity more than three months after Hurricane Maria. (AP Photo/Carlos […]

SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico (AP) – Puerto Rico’s power company says it has restored electricity to more than 80 percent of customers affected by an island-wide blackout that was caused by an excavator hitting a transmission line.
    
Officials said Thursday that more than 1.1 million of its clients now have power. Prior to Wednesday’s blackout on the U.S. territory of 3.3 million people, more than 44,000 customers were still without normal electric service nearly seven months after Hurricane Maria.
    
The Electric Power Authority said it expects to restore power to the remaining 326,000 customers by noon Thursday. The outage snarled traffic, forced businesses and schools to close and sparked long lines at gas stations.
    
It was the first time Puerto Rico was hit by an island-wide blackout since the Category 4 storm struck on Sept. 20.
 

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