A power plant fire in the US territory of Puerto Rico has caused a widespread blackout on Thursday soon after an apparent online attack.
Luma Energy, the Canadian company which took over the transmission and distribution of electricity in Puerto Pico recently, said that an explosion and subsequent fire at its Monacillos power distribution substation in San Juan, Puerto Rico’s capital, had prompted the blackout.
“The fire caused major blackouts across the entire island. The situation is under assessment and work is being done to restore the system,” tweeted Luma Energy.
The blackout affected nearly 800,000 customers. By midnight, around 60,000 customers were still without electricity.
The fire broke out shortly after the company reported a cyber-attack earlier that day.
Luma Energy reported earlier that a distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attack on its client portal and mobile application disrupted customer access to its online services
“The DDoS attack was identified and has been issuing 2 million visits per second. As a result, many clients may have had difficulty accessing the information related to their accounts,” said Luma Energy in a statement.
The company did not yet announce whether the fire and DDoS attacks are connected.