CECorps with working with a non-profit recently incorporated in Puerto Rico with a mission is “to maximize the capacity of first responders to save lives with renewable energy” and their vision is that “every first responder station around the world is equipped with a renewable energy backup system” so that “no person loses their life because first responders lack access to power”. This community partner would like to install solar and battery back-up on all first responder facilities (fire, police, ems) to increase the ability to respond during disasters. Eventually, they would like to scale to other islands in the Caribbean. They are focusing their first efforts on fire stations in Puerto Rico.

Project Background

There are 94 fire stations in Puerto Rico with little information on facility infrastructure. Solar Responders would like to have a better understanding of the capacity of critical facilities and would like CECorps engineering assistance to do so. They would also like to understand gaps in facility operations and have reports on the status of facility structures and energy. The community partner would also like to have a better understanding of government funding (USDA, CORE3, etc) including engineering support.

Project Scope

In regards to Puerto Rico 94 Fire Stations and 56 EMS stations, the Scope of Work may include:
  1. Structural soundness and installing solar panels
  2. Earthquake risk assessment
  3. Energy audit
  4. Engineering training for upcoming solar installers

About the Community

On September 20th, 2017, Hurricane Maria knocked out power to 100% of Puerto Rico’s 3.4 million residents, hospitals, telecommunications, fire stations, and 85% of the police stations. The storm devastated all aspects of the electrical grid (the above-ground lines, transformers, power plants) which resulted in the longest blackout in the United States. An estimated 2,975 people died in Puerto Rico as a direct result of Hurricane Maria. Installation of solar panels on first responder buildings will increase the capacity of first responders to save lives in emergency situations as well as provide a safe haven for community members during a disaster.