Response to Hurricane Irma: Cuba Situation Report No. 16 - Office of the Resident Coordinator (28/09/2017)



  • Roads along the northern coast of Havana and Mayabeque remain partially or totally closed and under repair due to the severe damage caused by Hurricane Irma.

  • The impact of the hurricane reduced tourist arrivals in September by 50%. More than 5,400 rooms were affected in Varadero, representing 26% of the total rooms available in the city.

  • In Bolivia Municipality in Ciego de Ávila Province, 99% of schools were damaged by the hurricane.

  • The strong winds of the hurricane caused severe damage to the ecosystem and natural heritage in the forests of Jobo Rosado, Topes de Collantes, and Banao, in Central Cuba. It is estimated that the restoration of biodiversity will be a complex and lengthy process.

Situation overview

Due to the magnitude of the damage caused by Hurricane Irma, the assessment of its impacts continues. Preliminary information confirms that the most damaged sectors are housing, agriculture, water and sanitation, energy, education, and health, mainly in the Central and Western Regions of the country.

In the affected territories, actions continue to be taken to improve sanitation, provide water and food, provide temporary facilities for victims, and control the epidemiological situation in order to prevent the emergence of diseases.

National authorities have set up a bank account in Cuban pesos (CUP) and another in Cuban convertible pesos (CUC) to receive donations from the Cuban population in support of hurricane victims. The account number in Cuban pesos is 0598770001459913 and in convertible pesos is 0598770000989221. Deposits can be made at any bank in the country.

Humanitarian Response

National Authorities

The Vice President of the Council of State and Ministers, Ramiro Valdés Menéndez, and national authorities from the Ministries of Construction, Energy and Mines and Water Resources are traveling through affected areas and speaking with victims of the hurricane in Camagüey Province.

The President of the National Defense Council confirmed the impacts to housing, agriculture, and basic services as well as the recovery efforts in Las Tunas Province.

The Provincial Defense Council in Camagüey is supporting the sale of some 20 reasonably-priced food products through the ration card for the population of Esmeralda, Nuevitas, Sierra de Cubitas, and Minas Municipalities, the most impacted in Camagüey.

International Cooperation

Humanitarian aid from Panama arrived in Cuba as part of international support for the country’s recovery. The shipment contains mattresses, sheets, towels, blankets, and toilet modules, among other basic necessities for affected families.

A Red Cross humanitarian relief load arrived in Cuba and will support thousands of people who lost their homes and livelihoods due to Hurricane Irma. The load contains hygiene kits, tarpaulins, kitchen kits, toolkits, buckets, jerrycans, mosquito nets, and water purification tablets.

The Ministry of Emergency Situations of the Russian Federation reports that it will send a shipment of 1,200 tons of humanitarian aid to help mitigate the damage caused by Hurricane Irma.