At least 10 persons have died in Cuba as a consequence of the effects of Hurricane Irma, sources from the General Staff of the Cuban Civil Defense reported today.
Most of the deceased died because of the collapse of buildings, seven of them in Havana, although the hurricane also caused strong floods on the country’s northern coast.
“After the passage of the dangerous Hurricane Irma through the national territory up to now the unfortunate loss of 10 human lives has been reported in the territories of Havana, Matanzas, Camagüey and Ciego de Ávila,” says the note.
In a message President Raúl Castro appealed to the Cubans’ “spirit of resistance and victory” after the passage of the “devastating” hurricane that caused “severe damages” to the country, according to the communiqué published in the daily Granma.
It highlighted that in these circumstances “the unity of the Cubans, the solidarity among neighbors and the discipline in the face of the orientations issued by the National General Staff of the Civil Defense has predominated.”
In the message, directed at the Cubans, the president specified that the hurricane caused “damages to homes, the electric system and agriculture,” and also affected some of the island’s tourist destinations.
These tourist zones will be recovered “before the start of the peak season” in November, he specified.
“These have been difficult days for our people, who in just a few hours saw how what had been built with effort had been hit by a devastating hurricane,” the Cuban president said.
During Friday and Saturday the hurricane affected Cuba’s northern coast from east to west with a category 4, causing serious coastal floods and forcing the evacuation of 1.7 million persons.
A man takes out rubble from his home on Sunday September 10 after Hurricane Irma’s passage through Havana. The keys on Cuba’s northern coast, which were the zone through which the eye of Hurricane Irma was the closest to, suffered serious material damages, especially the hotel infrastructure and the causeway that joins the keys to terra firma, the local media reported today. Photo: Ernesto Mastrascusa / EFE.
EFE / OnCuba