On Monday morning, Cuban authorities confirmed the collapse of a third storage tank at the Supertanker Base in Matanzas. The fire in this industrial facility started on Friday and has left one dead and over a hundred people injured so far.
Efforts Continue to Put Out Industrial Fire in Cuba
Previously, in a letter addressed to President Miguel Diaz-Canel, Chinese President Xi Jinping assured that his country is prepared to provide assistance to Cuba. He also expressed his condolences to the victims of the fire and their families.
The authorities of the fuel depots alerted about the fire at 7:00 p.m. local time on Friday. According to the first hypotheses, the fire occurred after lightning struck the base of fuel deposits, exceeding the capabilities of the lightning rod system.
In the afternoon, a first deposit loaded with some 25,000 cubic meters of oil exploded. A few hours later, another tank, with an undetermined amount of fuel, caught fire.
The tweet reads, "The Maria Cristina ship, which has a storage capacity of 6,000 tons of fuel, is arriving in Matanzas Bay to evacuate crude oil from the Supertanker Base's tanks. That diesel is distributed in service centers in Matanzas and La Havana."
So far, this industrial fire has left one dead, 16 people missing, 122 citizens injured, and some 5,000 people evicted from homes near the accident site.
Since the early hours of the morning, several army helicopters are collecting seawater and throwing it in the area of the fire. A powerful water pump imported from Venezuela will also be used to spread a chemical agent and put out the flames.
Cuban authorities announced that three helicopters have launched 61 seawater drops of 2,500 liters each. Dromedary-type fumigation planes with over 1,200 liters each will also be used to put out the fire.