Three Dead, Thousands Displaced Following Cuba Storms

(AFP) – Three people have died and thousands have been evacuated after heavy rains pummeled eastern and central Cuba in recent days, authorities said Monday.

Heavy rains that started Thursday had subsided by Monday evening, but recovery operations were still underway in several eastern provinces, including Holguin, Camaguey, Granma, Santiago de Cuba and Las Tunas, as well as in Sancti Spiritus, in the center of the island.

The Camaguey Civil Defense said in a statement on Monday that a 56-year-old man had been found dead in a dam and that the causes of death of another 67-year-old man are being investigated.

In Granma, nearly 7,500 people had been evacuated from their homes. In nearby Las Tunas, some 1,730 acres (700 hectares) of crops were damaged.

Granma authorities had reported on Friday the death of a man over the age of 60 from drowning.

“We are going to recover, no one will be helpless,” President Miguel Diaz-Canel promised on Sunday.

Bridges, roads and the sewage system have been reportedly damaged by the rains, and trains heading east from Havana have been cancelled.