This Wednesday, after Hurricane Ian’s powerful winds caused chaos on the western part of the island, employees from Cuba’s energy suppliers work to restore electricity to thousands of homes there. After the hurricane landed in the country, the country is currently witnessing a widespread outage.
Particularly in the southwest of La Coloma, the Category 3 hurricane struck the Pinar del Rio region on Tuesday. Forecasters said that storm surges, mudslides, and flash floods would result from Hurricane Ian’s 16 inches of rain, which would be hazardous. Authorities’ warnings drove many in the neighborhood to leave their homes and head to evacuation shelters.
Cubans saw the devastation left behind by the hurricane, including fallen trees, inundated places, and a country without power. However, according to officials, over 11 million people would have access to energy again within a week.
To ensure public safety, the National Electric System cut off its power. A community under water is more vulnerable to electrocutions, fatalities, and other consequential harm or fatalities. However, the management of the state-run power company said they would likely restore the grid’s electricity after the water recedes and the weather becomes better.
The nation currently experiences frequent blackouts. Blackouts often occur on electrical systems due to supply interruptions and constraints of fuels and other resources.
There was a widespread evacuation
Authorities were made aware of Hurricane Ian, and a major evacuation was therefore ordered. In particular, individuals residing in the Pinar del Rio Province and over 38,000 people were required to leave. As a precaution against the hurricane, other nearby regions were recommended to seek safety in evacuation shelters. Communication is tough, according to some people whose families are still living in the region of Pinal del Rio.
Living in Spain, Adriana Rivera mentioned that she could not contact her family. They were among the Pinar del Rio residents who Hurricane Ian impacted. Rivera claims she last spoke to her family during Hurricane Ian’s onslaught when she learned that her mother, sister, cousin, and nephew had to go up to the house’s second floor due to flooding.
“They didn’t expect the hurricane to be this strong. I hope they’re okay. The uncertainty is killing me,” Rivera shares.
Mayelin Suarez, who saw Hurricane Ian’s intensity firsthand, found the incident frightening.
“We almost lost the roof of our house. My daughter, my husband and I tied it down with a rope to keep it from flying away,” Suarez recounted.
The legendary Cuban tobacco is harvested in Pinar del Rio, a region with millions of citizens. Following the hurricane, images of the severe damage Hurricane Ian inflicted on the local tobacco crops were sent to the official Cuban media.
Hurricane Ian is on its way to Florida
It’s still early for the storm to end its wrath. However, it is moving towards Florida after Cuba and has intensified into a Category 5 hurricane, which has caused officials and locals to become highly alarmed and concerned. Weather agencies alerted more than 2.5 million citizens today to be ready for the worst.
The Emergency Management Director of the Florida Division, Kevin Guthrie, said, “I implore, I urge everyone that is in an evacuation zone that has been asked to evacuate – the time is now. You must evacuate now. There will be a time when it will not be safe to travel the roads.”
“There will come a point in time when local public safety officials will not be able to respond to your cry for help. You may be left to fend for yourself,” he added.
The same warning was also sent to millions of Floridians by Governor Ron DeSantis, who stated, “This is going to be a lot of impacts that will be felt far and wide throughout the state of Florida. As the storm moves in, you’re going to potentially have (evacuation) directives issued from folks in the interior of our state or even the east coast of the state for low-lying areas that absolutely could end up flooding.”
Photo Credit: Ramon Espinose
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