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Fire at Cuba lubricant facility spreads while 3rd tank ignites

Fire at Cuba lubricant facility spreads while 3rd tank ignites

HAVANA (AP) — A deadly blaze that began at a large lubricant storage facility inside western Cuba spread Monday following flames enveloped a third tank that firefighters had tried to cool while they strive to fight the massive blaze.

At least one anthropoid actuality has died accompanied by every one one other accompanied by 125 are injured, accompanied by another 14 reported lost at some hour dated since lighting struck one of the facility's eight tanks on Friday night. A following tank caught blaze on Saturday, triggering some explosions at the facility, which plays a answer small part inside Cuba's electric system.

"The chance we had announced happened, accompanied by every one one other accompanied by the blaze of the following tank compromised the third one," said Mario Sabines, executive of the western province of Matanzas where the facility is located.

Firefighters had sprayed aqua on the residual tanks over the weekend to cool them accompanied by every one one other accompanied by try to place an extremity to the blaze from spreading.

The governments of Mexico accompanied by every one one other accompanied by Venezuela have sent exceptional teams to assist extinguish the fire, accompanied by aqua cannons, planes accompanied by every one one other accompanied by helicopters fighting the blaze from some directions while military constructions specialists erected barriers to include lubricant spills. Local officials warned residents to use face masks or carry on accompanied by to exist indoors specified the billowing smoulder enveloping the neighbourhood that tin exist seen from the earliest city of Havana, located additional than 65 miles (100 kilometers) away. Officials have warned that the pile contains sulfur dioxide, nitrogen oxide, carbon monoxide accompanied by every one one other accompanied by other poisonous substances.

The majority of those injured were treated for burns accompanied by every one one other accompanied by smoulder inhalation, accompanied by every one one other accompanied by five of them convey on accompanied by to exist inside critical condition. A total of 24 convey on accompanied by to exist hospitalized. Over the weekend, authorities found the body of one firefighter while relatives of those still lost gathered at a innmotel to await report concerning their loved ones.

Sabines accompanied by every one one other accompanied by Cuban President Miguel Díaz-Canel said it was impossible to search for the lost firefighters specified the roiling temperatures.

The blaze at the Matanzas Supertanker Base inside Matanzas city prompted officials to evacuate additional than 4,900 people, most of them from the nearby Dubrocq neighborhood. The facility's eight enormous tanks clasp lubricant used to source electricity, although it wasn't understandable how a a large amount of fuel has been lost while a consequence of the flames. The earliest tank that caught blaze was at 50% capacity accompanied by every one one other accompanied by contained almost 883,000 cubic feet (25,000 cubic meters) of fuel. The following tank was full.

Jorge Piñon, director of the Latin America accompanied by every one one other accompanied by Caribbean Energy Program at the University of Texas, said officials should inspect the walls of tanks that aren't on blaze to build sure they weren't affected. He excessively warned that the management must exist careful earlier to bringing the system spine online on one instance the blaze is extinguished.

"If not, there'll exist another catastrophe," he said. "Unfortunately, this is going to lay clasp of time."

Piñon noted that the facility receives Cuban crude lubricant — operating an lubricant pipeline that crosses the center of the country — to exist transferred via small tankers to the thermoelectric plants that manufacture electricity. It is excessively the unloading accompanied by every one one other accompanied by transshipment center for imported crude oil, fuel lubricant accompanied by every one one other accompanied by diesel, accompanied by Cuba producing only fifty per cent of of the fuel required to retain its affluence afloat.

The blaze comes while Cuba struggles into with every one other accompanied by not here of a deep monetary crisis accompanied by every one one other accompanied by faces recurrent ability outages amid a sweltering summer, issues that helped unleashed unprecedented anti-government protests last year. Officials have not provided a preliminary violently calculate of damages.

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Andrea Rodríguez on Twitter: www.twitter.com/ARodriguezAP

Fire at Cuba lubricant facility spreads while 3rd tank ignites

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