More than 40 days and two Category 5 hurricanes later, St. John in the US Virgin Islands is still in complete darkness.
While much of the national attention has focused on 81% of Puerto Rico not having power, US citizens on St. John are also waiting on the return of electricity, and with it, a sense of normalcy.
On Wednesday, the Virgin Islands Water and Power Authority gave a long-awaited update on the island’s status. Sections of St. John can expect an “initial wave of service restoration by next week,” reads a post on its Facebook page.
The island of about 4,000 citizens lost power after Hurricane Irma caused widespread damage to the electric transmission and distribution system on St. John and St. Thomas in early September.
Before the power authority could begin power restoration on St. John, Hurricane Maria hit. Its strong winds and heavy rain not only caused more damage to both islands, but also added St. Croix to the mix. It had largely been spared Irma’s wrath.
Since then, the power and water company employed hundreds of on- and off-island linemen to help with restoration and repair work across the entire US Virgin Islands, Executive Director Julio Rhymer told CNN in September.
On Friday, divers will determine damage to the undersea cables that power St. John. After the assessments, the power authority says Cruz Bay, a few schools, and possibly a few other parts of the island will have power restored by the end of next weekend.