3 dead, 172 injured in Havana after powerful tornado

HAVANA. KAZINFORM A powerful tornado passed through the Cuban capital on Sunday night, leaving three people dead and 172 wounded, Cuban President Miguel Diaz-Canel said early Monday, Xinhua reports.

Diaz-Canel said in a message on his Twitter account that he has inspected the affected areas in the municipality of Regla in Havana.

"The damage is severe, so far we regret the loss of 3 human lives and treat 172 injured. Several brigades (are) already working on the restoration," the president said in the message.

The tornado hit several municipalities in Havana, leaving much of the city without power and causing substantial material damage.

On social networks, Cubans shared photos of the twister's impact, with images of overturned cars, debris of collapsed houses and bent power lines.

"The strength of the tornado winds can be compared to that of a Category 4 or 5 hurricane, although its impact is more focused," said the Cubadebate website on its Facebook account.

The storm spread on Sunday night with heavy rains, strong winds of 100 km per hour and coastal flooding.

The country's weather institute said the extratropical low has been weakening in the last few hours and the rains will be of less intensity.

Electricity service has been restored in some localities in the city as weather conditions have improved.

Tornadoes are not common in Cuba. The most memorable one occurred in December 1940, when a tornado swept the western town of Bejucal, causing casualties.

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