Over $1 million will support critical services during an emergency through backup energy
San Juan, Puerto Rico – The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) allocated over $1 million in mitigation measures for generator projects that will help address future disasters in several facilities at Bayamón and Guaynabo. These funds under the Hazard Mitigation Grant Program (HMGP) will provide essential services to communities during power outages or future natural disasters. To date, the agency has awarded nearly $415.3 million under HMGP for the installation of generators in multiple projects.
“Guaranteeing power during an emergency is critical for communities. This is one of the measures that FEMA is working on to strengthen the preparedness of government agencies and non-profit organizations that will serve Puerto Rico during a future response,” explained Federal Disaster Recovery Coordinator José G. Baquero.
The Onofre Carballeira Coliseum — which includes the premises of the Rubén Rodríguez Coliseum and the Juan Ramón Loubriel Stadium in Bayamón — is one of the facilities where nearly $248,000 from the agency were invested. With these funds, two 500-kilowatt and 480-volt generators were purchased, which will protect against the impact of future natural events. The place is key for the municipality as it serves as a shelter for some 140 people and as a distribution center for food, water and other essential resources to the community after a disaster.
Another significant project at Bayamón is the installation of eleven emergency generators for eleven water distribution plants of the Puerto Rico Aqueduct and Sewer Authority (PRASA) around various communities in the municipality. The installation of these generators with over $670,000 from the agency supposes an essential support to some 16,000 families during an interruption of the energy service.
Meanwhile, the Home for the Elderly of the College of Engineers and Surveyors of Puerto Rico (CIAPR, in Spanish) also received over $117,000 for energy backup that already benefits its residents. The obligation allowed the installation of a 125-kilowatt emergency generator with a 583‑gallon gasoline tank.
The president of the CIAPR, Faustino González Quiles, explained that the previous 60-kilowatt generator had been operating for more than 30 years. The new generator now provides electricity to the common area of each floor and will ensure that residents can have a refrigerator that will be supplied during emergencies to store medicine and water. “This generator contributes to guarantee the well-being of the elderly in emergency situations,” added González Quiles.
CIAPR’s Home for the Elderly has 101 apartments for low-income seniors and has operated for more than 50 years. The building also has terraces, a passive park, a common laundry area, a room for activities and a chapel, among other amenities.
The executive director of the Central Office for Recovery, Reconstruction and Resiliency (COR3, in English), Manuel A. Laboy Rivera, stated: “at COR3 we have worked together with the subrecipients to identify opportunity areas for the development of projects through FEMA’s HMGP program. These projects, that are under development and others completed, provide energy redundancy to improve services and the quality of life of our people. Important projects remain to be obligated and our commitment is to continue supporting the subrecipients in the process until these works materialize.”
To date, FEMA has awarded over $3.1 billion for 150 HMGP projects that will address mitigation measures for a more resilient Puerto Rico.
For more information about Puerto Rico’s recovery, visit fema.gov/disaster/4339, fema.gov/disaster/4473 and recovery.pr. Follow us on our social media at Facebook.com/FEMAPuertoRico, Facebook.com/COR3pr and Twitter @COR3pr.