Puerto Rico dark again, after line fails - Whitefish Energy says - ABC FOX Montana Local News, Weather, Sports KTMF | KWYB

Puerto Rico dark again, after line fails - Whitefish Energy says, not our fault

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Photos from Whitefish Energy Photos from Whitefish Energy

A major power outage today in Puerto Rico erases a bulk of the progress Whitefish Energy had made on the island.

A main power line repaired by the Montana Company failed this morning

The line runs from Cambalache to Manati.

PREPA, the Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority, reports that 43% of the island had power until the failure, now that number is down to 18%.

Whitefish Energy found itself in the national spotlight last month after securing a 300-million dollar contract with PREPA, following the devastation brought by Hurricane Maria.

Critics want to know how a little company in Whitefish, with just two employees, could secure such a lucrative contract.

Speculation of favoritism ran rampant because Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke is from Whitefish and knows the CEO of Whitefish Energy.

We received an email late this afternoon from a Whitefish Energy spokesperson, who tells us,

"None of the issues reported today have anything to do with repairs Whitefish Energy performed."

In fact, PREPA told CNN this afternoon, "It was a mechanical issue on the line, could have happened at any line.  It’s being patrolled and repaired by PREPA."

Whitefish Energy's Web site shows that it currently has 440 linemen on the ground working to restore power to the U.S. territory.

It touts that it has restored power to 500,000 people in hospitals, homes, and businesses in the San Juan area.

Currently, congressional and FBI investigations are underway to determine how Whitefish Energy procured the contract with PREPA.

While PREPA has officially canceled the contract, it has committed to paying Whitefish Energy for the work it's done so far, and the work it still needs to do to finish-up its current projects.

PREPA is asking FEMA for the money to pay Whitefish Energy, but FEMA has yet to approve those funds.

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