Tropical Cyclone Elsa Landed on the Central Coast of Cuba

Havana — Tropical Storm Elsa struck along the southern coast of Cuba early Monday, and forecasters said it might land on the island’s central coast by noon.

By Sunday, Cuban officials had already struck several Caribbean islands and evacuated 180,000 people as a precautionary measure against the potential flooding caused by a storm that killed at least three people. Most of the displaced people stayed in relatives’ homes, others went to government shelters, and hundreds of mountainous people fled to caves in case of an emergency.

Elsa was expected to cross Cuba and head for Florida by Monday night. There, Governor Ron DeSantis declared a state of emergency in 15 counties, including Miami-Dade County, where a high-rise condominium collapsed on June 24.

At the end of Sunday, Elsa’s center was about 270 miles (440 km) southeast of Havana, traveling northwest at 15 miles per hour (24 kph). According to Miami’s National Hurricane Center, its maximum sustained winds have increased slightly to about 65 mph (100 km).

The center said the storm is likely to gradually subside as it passes through central Cuba. “Slight re-strengthening is possible after Elsa appears in the Straits of Florida and the southeastern Gulf of Mexico,” he said.

It rained intermittently in the eastern states of Cuba throughout Sunday as the storm passed south.

“So far, it’s been mild and mild rain. There’s no downpour. Yolanda Tabio, a 73-year-old retiree from Santiago, told The Associated Press.” I thought it might be worse. “

Rafael Carmenate, a local Red Cross volunteer living on the beach in Santa Cruz del Sul, told AP by phone: The sea has not invaded. It is cloudy and windy. “

The storm killed one person in Saint Lucia, according to the Caribbean Emergency Management Agency. A 15-year-old boy and a 75-year-old woman died on Saturday at separate events in the Dominican Republic after the wall collapsed, according to a statement from the Emergency Operations Center.

Home Depot Shopping
Frank Barakat will carry his daughter Valentina 2 on July 3, 2021 through a shopping aisle dedicated to hurricane supplies in Miami, Florida. (Aldious / Miami Herald via AP)

Elsa was a Category 1 hurricane until Saturday morning, causing extensive damage to several islands in the eastern Caribbean on Friday as the first hurricane of the Atlantic season. Barbados was the hardest hit, with more than 1,100 people reporting damage to their homes, including 62 collapsed homes.

Fallen trees have also been reported in Haiti, and erosion and deforestation are widespread, making them particularly vulnerable to floods and landslides. Haiti’s Civil Protection Agency said on Sunday that three people were injured in a fallen tree.

Tropical Cyclone Warnings have been issued in western Cuba and in the Florida Keys from Craig Key to Dry Tortugas. The Cuban government has issued hurricane warnings in Cienfuegos and Matanzas.

According to Miami University hurricane researcher Brian McNordi, Elsa was the earliest and fifth-named storm on record, breaking the record as the fastest-moving hurricane in the tropics at 31 mph on Saturday morning. It states that it has occurred.

In some parts of Cuba, it was predicted that there would be 5-10 inches of rainfall by Monday, with isolated spots up to 15 inches. Jamaica expected a total of 4-8 inches, up to a total of 15 inches.

Andrea Rodriguez

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