Following floods and power outages

Puerto Rico authorities approve reopening of casinos after Hurricane Fiona

Governor Pedro Pierluisi at the State Agency for Emergency and Disaster Management.
Reading time 1:37 min

The Government of Puerto Rico, through its Gaming Commission, announced Tuesday that it has authorized casinos to resume operations after they were previously closed due to Hurricane Fiona, which caused heavy flooding and power outages throughout the island. However, horse racing at the Camarero Racetrack will have to wait a couple of more days.

As reported in a press release, the interim executive director of the Gaming Commission, Jaime F. Rivera Emmanuelli, visited the different casinos, as well as the south zone paddocks, as part of an inspection process of the physical conditions of the facilities.

Rivera Emmanuelli said that in his inspection he was able to confirm that most of the casinos and horse-riding facilities are in optimal conditions, so they can reopen to the public. Therefore, the director of the Gaming Commission authorized the 18 casinos to resume operations from midday last Tuesday, with the exception of Ponce Hilton, which will reopen today at noon.

Meanwhile, the Camarero Racetrack will resume its morning activities and the races that were scheduled for last Saturday and Sunday over the next few weeks.

Juan C. Santaella Marchán, director of the Equestrian Bureau, said that the main track and the equine pool of the Racetrack will be open as of this Tuesday in their usual schedule. Additionally, the morning activities at the track will resume on Thursday. He also added that in the next few days, withdrawals and changes will be made at the Race Secretariat for the official races on Thursday and Friday, according to Telemundo Puerto Rico. 

To define the agenda of the programs that were canceled, the Secretary of Racing will hold a meeting with the Advisory Committee. As soon as the meeting concludes, a notification will be issued, according to an official statement. Rivera Emmanuelli also announced that the license renewal processes of all the businesses that are part of the Gaming Commission will begin on Wednesday during regular working hours.

Governor Pedro Pierluisi held a press conference on Tuesday where he provided updates on the situation after the hurricane and detailed how work will continue, anticipating that he will request a major disaster declaration from President Joe Biden.

Puerto Rico was under storm/hurricane effects for 48 hours, with an average of 10-16 inches of rain and 100 mph winds in some areas. Rain damage was heavy in the central, south, and southeast areas.

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