Another blackout plunges Venezuela into darkness

Another power blackout has again darkened Venezuela, snarling transportation and phone service — an event leader Nicolas Maduro blamed on an “electromagnetic attack.”

People wait on a street in Caracas Monday during a power outage in Venezuela. Photo by Miguel Gutierrez

The blackout occurred Monday and was the first nationwide loss of electricity since March. Maduro declared it a “criminal attack.”

“With the new criminal attack against the peace of the country, the Bolivarian government and the armed forces are deployed to meet the needs of the people,” Maduro tweeted.

Some reported online the power had returned to some regions late Monday. It wasn’t clear Tuesday how much of the country remained without power. NetBlocks, a nonprofit that tracks outages, said Monday the blackout disrupted 94 percent of the telecommunications infrastructure.

“All states of Venezuela have been severely impacted,” Netblocks stated. “The new incident has similar severity to the power disruptions earlier in 2019 with no immediate signs of recovery.”

Netblocks said early Tuesday better than 90 percent of the country still had no power.

Opposition leader and National Assembly President Juan Guaido blamed the outage on Maduro’s regime.

“They tried to hide the tragedy with [power] rationing throughout the country, but the failure is evident: They’ve destroyed the electrical system and have no answers,” he said.

ByClyde Hughes