Cuba floods 'worst in 40 years'

Campaign News | Friday, 9 November 2007

One person was killed and tens of thousands of homes damaged or destroyed in Cuba, in what the authorities say are the biggest floods in 40 years.

It was the first reported death in the country since the tropical storm Noel hit the Caribbean, killing at least 142 people across the region.

Of the 80,000 evacuated last week, half have not been able to return home.

Cuban authorities estimate the damage at around $500m, with sugar and coffee crops severely affected.

According to the ruling Communist Party daily, Granma, nearly 22,000 homes in the east of the country were damaged or destroyed.

Incessant rains which soaked the east of the country from 11 October to 5 November also wrecked thousand of kilometres of roads.

Officials said 50,000 hectares (123,000 acres) of sugar cane fields had been flooded or damaged.

Cuba has not seen such devastating floods since 1963, when Hurricane Flora killed over 1,100 people and destroyed more than 11,000 homes.

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