A Quarter Of Floridians Still Don't Have Power After Irma

AFP  Getty Images

Since Monday, power has been restored to more than 3.5 million homes and businesses in Florida.

"We believe at this time they may be related to the loss of power in the storm", Hollywood, Fla., Police Chief Tom Sanchez said according to Fox.

Irma, categorized as one of the most powerful Atlantic storms on record when it rampaged through the Caribbean, has killed at least 77 people, including 36 in the United States, officials said.

But he said that if someone relies on medical equipment that needs power that they should not wait for the utility to restore electricity.

Florida Power and Lights, the state's largest utility provider, said it has 21,500 personnel assigned to power restoration.

The total number of customers, representing about 12 million people, dipped from a peak of more than 7.4 million customers, or about 15 million people, late on Monday. Ed Devarona, senior director of emergency preparedness, told USA Today that the utility expects it may need to rebuild much of its Gulf Coast infrastructure, from downed poles and transformers to entire substations. As of Tuesday afternoon, that number had decreased to 3.4 million. Like FPL, it reported that "in some cases, these could be long-duration outages, particularly if energy infrastructure must be rebuilt before power can be restored".

Most of those costs were related to Matthew, which caused a third as many outages as Irma did for FPL.

While Consumers Energy crews are providing restoration support, the company and its employees also are helping in other ways. He said the time to evaluate the system's performance is after the restorations are complete, not now.

FPL's outage map online shows more than 700-thousand people on the east coast of South Florida are still without power.

FPL said its two nuclear plants in Florida were safe.

In Georgia, utilities reported around 1.2 million customers without power Tuesday morning, down from a peak of more than 1.4 million on Monday night. Both reactors at its Turkey Point facility, about 30 miles (48 km) south of Miami, remained shut early Tuesday, while both reactors at its St. Lucie plant, about 120 miles (190 km) north of Miami, were operating at full power.

Related News: