SANTIAGO DE CUBA, Cuba (ACN) -- The initial estimate of losses caused by Hurricane Sandy in the eastern province of Santiago de Cuba is one of the highest in its history caused by the weather.
So far, losses are estimated at over 2.1 billion pesos. This figure, however, will increase when the count of damages in the tourism, sugar, construction and other sectors is concluded, as explained on Friday during a meeting of members of the command post of the Civil Defence in the territory.
Brigades from the provinces of Matanzas, Cienfuegos, Villa Clara, Ciego de Avila, Las Tunas and Granma are currently working in the re-establishment of electricity and telephone services, showing their solidarity with Santiago de Cuba residents now going through a difficult situation.
In the case of housing, according to preliminary figures, 43,000 roofs were totally destroyed, and 15,000 houses collapsed, said specialists of the Housing Institute in the province.
In this regard, Army Corps General Ramon Espinosa focused on the importance of guaranteeing the supply of tiles to people in need, particularly those of low income levels.
Lazaro Exposito, president of the Provincial Defence Council, explained that another priority is the cleaning of the province. The volume of debris is so high that it obstructs access to vital production and service centres, communities, and offices and facilities providing services to the people, he commented.
Meanwhile, in Holguin, close to 17,000 houses suffered structural damage as a consequence of the strong winds of Hurricane Sandy, which left the island through that province.
Most problems resulted from the partial collapse of roofs, according to preliminary data offered by Archi Lam, vice-president of the Provincial Administration Council.