Lightning strike on oil storage tank in Cuba causes massive fire

“We are closely following the confrontation with the industrial zone fire. We trust the authorities of the brave province, the brave firefighters and the CUPET workers,” tweeted President Miguel Díaz-Canel, referring to the state-owned Cuba Oil Union.

Cuba’s state media said no deaths had been reported.

The massive fire comes at a time when Cuba is facing an ever-deepening energy crisis amid fuel shortages.

“No human losses, injuries or fuel spillage at sea have been reported following the fire,” the Cuban Ministry of Energy and Mines tweeted.

According to Susely Morfa González, the first secretary of the Community Party of Cuba in Matanzas province, an electrical discharge at the base of the oil tank, which contains crude oil, started the fire.

The fire did not affect the Antonio Guiteras thermoelectric power plant, the ministry said, which contributes to the national electricity system.

Provincial authorities, the fire service, the Cuban Revolutionary Forces and the Interior Ministry are fighting the flames, González said.

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