Buildings Collapse under Heavy Rains in Cuba

Waves crash against Havana's seafront boulevard 'El Malecon' as tourists take pictures

Cuba’s Meteorological Institute recorded 2.8 inches of precipitation during a single three-hour period in in Havana and accumulations of up to 7.8 inches overnight. Two people are dead from these torrential rains that lashed Cuba for more than 24 hours. The deluge caused multiple collapses in dwellings in Havana, Granma reported.

A man and a woman were killed in one structure that caved in. Yunior Amesa, nephew of the deceased man, told the Associated Press he had left for work just before their building came down. ‘‘It was raining very hard and there was a lot of weight (from the water) up there. They went to bed. Minutes before, I was sitting in there,’’ Amesa said. ‘‘When I went to work I heard the building had collapsed and caught them both sleeping.’’

The rain arrived early Friday and fell near constantly throughout the day. Traffic snarled and some cars were stranded, as intersections flooded and streets turned into rushing rivers. Cuba’s Meteorological Institute recorded 2.8 inches (72 millimeters) of precipitation during a single three-hour period in the afternoon in Havana, and accumulations of up to 7.8 inches (200 millimeters) overnight.

Rain continued to fall in the capital early Saturday, and the famed seaside Malecon Boulevard remained closed because of high surf that was breaking over the seawall and onto the street. Granma said the area affected ranged from the western province of Artemisa to Ciego de Avila in the central part of the country.

For post in English, see http://www.boston.com/news/world/caribbean/2013/11/30/cuba-says-dead-heavy-rains-collapse-buildings/dkezS641SLG6UWxqe3xHEJ/story.html (Any attempts to find the original news on the Granma site yields Verizon ads!)

[Photo, which shows a similar moment in 2012, from http://uk.reuters.com/article/2012/08/28/us-storm-isaac-crops-idUKBRE87R0IG20120828]

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