an excerpt from the New York Times
Hearings in the Puerto Rican Senate revealed that the authority bought sludge and then billed Puerto Rico’s unsuspecting ratepayers as if they had bought high-grade oil.
The lack of electricity also affects the water supply in certain areas. Some towns need electricity to get their water pumped in.
For now, generators are the saving grace for the lucky few who have them to crank up their refrigerator and a few fans. Some restaurants, hotels and many hospitals have operating generators. But the vast majority of Puerto Ricans on the impoverished island cannot afford them.
For older residents, the lack of power could be dangerous.
Ermerita Rosa Perez, 83, sat on her porch in San Juan praying the rosary and worrying not just about comfort but about survival.
“Four to six months without electricity?! Oh no, no, no, no, we will die,” Ms. Rosa said. “Us old people can’t make it that long. Just today, I was looking at this flooded mess and I was thinking of mopping. I said, ‘No, I can’t. I need to rest.’ I will take a cold water bath — which I’m not supposed to do, because I have arthritis — and rest.”
She worried about her health. “I am diabetic. I have high blood pressure. It’s so hot I can’t take it,” she said. “I’m an old lady, hauling pots to my carport to cook on a gas stove? It’s too much. So I sit here on …
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