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News > Cuba

Hurricane Damage Recovery Advances in Cuba

  • Crews work night and day to restore services in Cuba

    Crews work night and day to restore services in Cuba | Photo: PL

Published 4 October 2022

Recovery efforts from the enormous damage caused by Hurricane Ian in the far west of Cuba continue today with intensity despite the island's challenging economic conditions.

Television reports from Pinar del Río, the westernmost province and also the most affected by the strong winds and rains of the hurricane that hit the country with category three on the Saffir-Simpson scale, give an account of the work to repair the damage and slowly return to normality.

According to still incomplete data in that province alone, some 100,000 houses were affected, of which 5,064 thousand were totally destroyed, according to a report by Noticiero de Televisión.

 Cuban President Visits Again the Province Most Affected by Ian

Authorities of that territory said that 496 tons of construction materials from other parts of the country have already been placed in the municipalities to help the affected families, many of which, precisely one week after the passing of the storm, are still in shelters or sheltered houses.

Likewise, the authorities of the commerce sector indicated that the sale of the basic food basket, consisting of rice, beans, sugar, coffee and other products, is guaranteed to all the population of that territory and that the supply of bread to the population has been stabilized.

In Pinar del Río, where practically all the power lines were damaged, electricity is being restored to hospitals, other prioritized centers and part of the population. However, there is still a long way to go before power is restored to all localities.

To this end, brigades from the Construction and Electrical Installations Company and electrical companies from the provinces of Granma, Ciego de Avila, Matanzas, Las Tunas, Santiago de Cuba and Guantanamo were assigned to reinforce these tasks in the municipalities of Pinar del Río.

These workers were honored on Tuesday in this capital in an act headed by President Miguel Díaz-Canel, after working hard to rehabilitate the electric service in Havana, which was also affected by the hurricane.

Educational authorities are also creating conditions to restart the teaching calendar where possible since, according to official data, 447 schools were damaged by the hydrometeorological phenomenon in Pinar del Río.

In this sense, the president of the provincial Defense Council, Yamilé Ramos, asked to start classes in those localities that have the conditions to do so and in others to look for alternatives, such as the opening of classrooms in houses provided by the families.

Another priority in this territory, the leading tobacco producer in the country, is the recovery of some 10,000 leaf drying houses, which were destroyed or damaged, out of the 12,000 in the province.

Notwithstanding the complicated situation in this productive sector, it was reported that work is being done to recover the tobacco seedbeds damaged by the hurricane and that there are enough fertilizers to advance in planting for the next harvest.

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