About 239,000 still without power in Puerto Rico days after Fiona

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FILE PHOTO: Hurrican Fiona landfalls in Puerto Rico

NEW YORK (Reuters) – An estimated 239,000 homes and businesses were still without power in Puerto Rico on Thursday almost two weeks after Hurricane Fiona hit the island, data showed.

After causing devastation in Puerto Rico and the Dominican Republic, Fiona turned north and slammed into eastern Canada on Sept. 24, leaving more than a third of Nova Scotia without power.

Nova Scotia Power, a unit of Canadian energy company Emera Inc, said about 78,200 customers were still without power there early on Thursday.

Fiona hit Puerto Rico on Sept. 18, knocking out power across the island that is home to about 3.3 million people

PowerOutage.us, which estimates outages based on utility data, said 239,000 customers were without service on Thursday based on information from LUMA Energy, which operates Puerto Rico’s grid.

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Those numbers were down from 349,000 customers recorded without power a day earlier, suggesting a much faster pace of restoration than when the much bigger Hurricane Maria struck about five years ago.

LUMA Energy said it restored service to 1.178 million customers by early Thursday and expects to have 77%-91% of customers restored by Friday if there is sufficient generation available.

LUMA is a joint venture owned by units of Canadian energy firm ATCO Ltd (50%) and U.S. energy contractor Quanta Services Inc (50%).

(Reporting by Scott DiSavino; Editing by Andrew Heavens)

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