Hurricane

Florida company sends giant generators to Puerto Rico to restore power

In powerless Puerto Rico, washboards and hand-held fans are making a comeback

Almost four weeks after Hurricane Maria battered Puerto Rico, 85 percent of the population is still without electricity, forcing people to go old school, with washboards, candles and cash to manage life in the new dark ages. (In Spanish)
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Almost four weeks after Hurricane Maria battered Puerto Rico, 85 percent of the population is still without electricity, forcing people to go old school, with washboards, candles and cash to manage life in the new dark ages. (In Spanish)

Power is on the way for hurricane-ravaged Puerto Rico in the form of two giant fuel-powered generators.

APR Energy, a Jacksonville-based firm, has shipped two turbines to the island nation, which means thousands of customers will have their power restored within weeks, said Ed Patricoff, a partner in the law firm Shutts & Bowen, which is representing the company.

“This is an immediate solution,” said Patricoff, adding the turbines at the Palo Seco power plant, just outside of San Juan, arrived late last week. “It’s a stop-gap measure.”

Patricoff said APR was contacted by the governor of Puerto Rico, Ricardo Rosello, days after Hurricane Maria moved through Sept. 20, leaving the island without power. About 85 percent of the island is still without lights.

Shutts & Bowen negotiated the $35-million contract with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.

The turbines are capable of producing about 50 megawatts of power by using natural gas, which will turn the lights on for about 5,600 households and businesses, Patricoff said. What they will also do, he said, is help stabalize a damaged grid, which means about 50,000 people will soon have their power restored

Patricoff said the company also secured a contract with the U.S. Virgin Islands to provide a turbine.

Carli Teproff: 305-376-3587, @CTeproff

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