Lightning struck an oil storage facility in Matanzas, Cuba, with a population of 140,000, causing a disaster.
While 17 firefighters who intervened in the flaming oil-filled tanks disappeared, at least one person died and 121 were injured in the incident. The missing firefighters are believed to have been caught in the flames. While the authorities announced that 800 people living in the area were evacuated, the dense black smoke cloud could be seen even from miles away.
HELP FROM MEXICO While
the firefighters focused on keeping the tanks cold where the flames did not spread, it was stated that there were 8 giant tanks in total at the facility. It is not yet known how much of the oil used in electricity generation is burned. While the intervention of military helicopters was also insufficient, the government announced that they “asked for help from friendly countries”. A plane carrying 60 soldiers and 22 technical experts from Mexico departed for Cuba . The United States also offered help, but Washington has yet to receive a response.