Two Firefighters, Occupant Killed in Havana, Cuba, Collapse

Oct. 5, 2023
A partial building collapse hours after major rainfall in Havana's old town has left three firefighters dead.

Havana — Two firefighters and one other person were killed in the partial collapse of a residential building in Havana's famous old town, the Cuban government said on Wednesday.

It was not initially known why the obviously dilapidated house had partially collapsed during the night, but it had been raining heavily. Officials say 13 families with a total of 54 people lived in the three-storey building.

The Cuban Interior Ministry said the two rescue workers, aged 40 and 23, rushed to the scene following a first partial collapse, but were surprised by a second and buried under the rubble.

A third body was found under the rubble on Wednesday evening. The government had previously said that a 79-year-old was potentially trapped.

Many houses and other parts of the infrastructure in Cuba are in poor condition because they have not been maintained for decades, or only in a makeshift manner.

Most recently, a man died last Thursday when the ceiling of an apartment collapsed in central Havana, the capital of the socialist Caribbean country.

The United States trade embargo that has been in place for more than 60 years, further US sanctions as well as the poorly performing economy make it difficult for Cubans to procure building materials.

©2023 dpa GmbH. Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.

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