Lightning strikes an oil depot in Cuba, calling for international help to tackle the extent of the fire

Lightning strikes an oil depot in Cuba, calling for international help to tackle the extent of the fire

The Cuban presidency stated that the 17 missing persons were “firefighters who were in the area closest to the fire” when the explosion occurred, which “seeked help and advice from friendly countries with experience in the petroleum sector. On Twitter, President Miguel Diaz-Canel estimated that the fire had been brought under control” It takes time.”

The official Granma newspaper reported that three of the injured were in critical condition, three were in a very serious condition, and 12 people were seriously injured.

France Press agency

The fire broke out Friday evening when a lightning strike struck an oil depot on the outskirts of Matanzas, a city of 140,000 people 100 kilometers east of Havana. Then the fire spread to a second tank. According to Granma, “there was a malfunction in the lightning rod system that could not withstand the force of the electrical discharge.”

Mario Sabines Lorenzo, the governor of Matanzas, said about 800 people had been evacuated.

Unprecedented volume

According to Asbel Leal, director of trade and supply at the Cuban Petroleum Union (Cupet), the first reservoir “contained approximately 26,000 cubic meters of domestic crude, or nearly 50% of its maximum capacity” at the time of the disaster. The second tank contained 52,000 cubic meters of fuel oil. According to him, Cuba has never faced a conflagration of “the magnitude of the day”.

Granma said the sediments supply the Antonio Guitras power plant, the largest in Cuba, but that pumping to the station has not stopped.

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