Hurricane Ian left Cuba without electricity

Hurricane Ivan left Cuba without electricity

Hurricane Ian, which hit the western tip of Cuba, caused power outages across the country and destroyed some of the most important tobacco farms.

Electric Union, the Cuban energy company, said work was under way overnight to gradually restore power to the country’s 11 million residents. Initially about one million people were without power, but later the entire power system collapsed.

“Ian” hit Cuba, which is struggling to cope with an economic crisis and has faced frequent power outages in recent months.

It made landfall in the western part of the island as a Category 3 storm, devastating the province of Pinar del Rio, where much of the tobacco for Cuba’s famous cigars is grown.

Tens of thousands of people were evacuated and others fled the area before the arrival of Ian, which caused flooding, damaged homes and fell trees. Authorities are still assessing the damage, though no casualties had been reported by Tuesday evening.

“Ian” is now moving toward Florida over the warm waters of the Gulf of Mexico and is expected to strengthen into a catastrophic Category 4 storm.

Two and a half million people in Florida have been ordered to evacuate.