Puerto Rico: Lack of electricity threatens telephone and internet services

Jacques Latour Jacques.Latour at cira.ca
Fri Oct 20 20:36:44 CST 2017

Here's a fact, the next ICANN meeting in March is still a go in San Juan PR.  Hopefully bringing 2000 people will have a positive impact on the local economy.

> -----Original Message-----
> From: NANOG [mailto:nanog-bounces at nanog.org] On Behalf Of Todd
> Underwood
> Sent: October 19, 2017 7:56 PM
> To: Jean-Francois Mezei <jfmezei_nanog at vaxination.ca>
> Cc: NANOG list <nanog at nanog.org>
> Subject: Re: Puerto Rico: Lack of electricity threatens telephone and internet
> services
> This thread is mostly full of idle speculation, is at the least insensitive and
> verges on offensive.
> If you have operational information about Puerto Rico (see Sean Donelan's
> posts rather than these responses), please go ahead. If you would like to
> allocate blame, please go somewhere else to do it. The Internet is full of
> people who are blaming Puerto Rico for getting hit by a hurricane. I don't
> need it here.
> Thanks,
> T
> (From Humacao)
> El 19 oct. 2017 19:45, "Jean-Francois Mezei"
> <jfmezei_nanog at vaxination.ca>
> escribió:
> On 2017-10-19 18:18, Wayne Bouchard wrote:
> > Well, the problem as I understand it is that the infrastructure was
> > not all that great to begin with. Much of it was damaged in the first
> > storm and when this second one came through, what remained basically
> > disappeared.
> Being hit with a Cat 5 hurricane/cyclone in a caribeean island that hasn't
> been a direct hit from severe storms in decades will cause extensive damage
> no matter what state its infrastructure was in before.
> Vegetation that does not regular storms to "prune" it will grow to a point
> where it will cause major damage when a big storm hits.
> And a caribbean island who has never been "rich" will not have had, as a
> priority, increasing building codes to widthstand hurricanes. Building codes
> get updated after a big devastating hurricane, whether it is for Darwin in
> 1974 (Tracy) or ones like Andrew in Florida.
> It's easy for a state the size of Texas to send all of its electrical utility trucks
> to the Houson area to repair damage. But they too would be stretched thin if
> all of Texas had been leveled.
> If buildings were not built to widthstand a 5 or a 4, then the building itself
> becomes destructor of infrastructure as its materials become high speed
> projectiles throuwn at other buildings and especially teleohone/electrical
> lines.
> I went through a category 4 (Olivia, Australia 1996). While the town and
> building I was in (Karatha) were built to new standards and had little damage,
> I witnessed the power of it, and I can totally understand Puerto Rico being
> destroyed.
> I know a politician with tendancy to skew facts points to Puerto Rico having
> had terrible infrastructure. But consider that Darwin, a "rich"
> town" was wiped out in 1974 by Tracy.
> https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B89wBGydSvs
> Tracy was a 4. Maria was a 5.
> (note the alert sound at start of video still sends shivers down my spine
> because it was the same as I heard before Olivia hit).
> The population was evacuated by 747s because there was nothing there to
> support it. The road link to is (Stuart Highway) is so long that Darwin is
> tantamount to an island. (especially since Stuart wasn't fully paved back
> then).
> Also note: in Florida, the utilities positioned all their equipment in safe places
> so it could survive storm and be deployed when needed. But what happens
> when there is no safe place, or the safe places become isolated because
> roads become impassable?
> It is one thing when a state has some areas with high level of destruction.
> But when the whole state is destroyed, it is a truly different situation because
> its economy is also destroyed. Florida Power still has plenty of revenues from
> undamaged areas to pay for the repairs in damaged areas. The Utility in
> Puerto Rico doesn't. (and if it was finacially weak before, it makes things
> worse).
> When you see other states' utilities coming to help in a highly damaged area,
> don't think for a minute they do this for free. The local utility stll gets a bill at
> the end of the day for the work done. If the Puerto Rico company has no
> cash to pay, don't exopect other utilities to send crews.

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