The entire island of Cuba is without electricity after Hurricane Ian struck Cuba on Tuesday. The hurricane made landfall on the western tip of the island, but due to the dilapidated state of the nation’s electrical grid after decades of neglect, the entire grid collapsed soon after, knocking power off across the island (via Politico):
Hurricane Ian knocked out power across all of Cuba and devastated some of the country’s most important tobacco farms when it slammed into the island’s western tip as a major hurricane Tuesday.
Cuba’s Electric Union said in a statement that work was underway to gradually restore service to the country’s 11 million people during the night. Power was initially knocked out to about 1 million people in Cuba’s western provinces, but later the entire grid collapsed.
Loss of power within an area hit by a major hurricane is to be expected, but years of neglect, mismanagement, and corruption left communist Cuba’s entire electrical grid vulnerable to a localized hit.
While the entire nation’s infrastructure is falling apart and Cubans struggle through both food shortages and deteriorating housing, the communist Castro dictatorship has invested whatever funds it has available into building hotels and resorts for foreign tourists. Hurricane Ian only exacerbated an already desperate situation.