The voracious fire unleashed since this Friday at the Matanzas Supertanker Base has caused the occurrence of black rain this Saturday in some areas of Havana.
According to several users on social networks, a black rain presumably loaded with contaminants has been observed in several places in the Cuban capital.
The Cuban journalist residing in Miami, Mario J. Pentón, shared on his Twitter profile a picture of black rainwater collected in an unspecified area of Havana, with the following information “Watch out, it’s raining in some areas of Havana. Look at the contamination. Don’t expose yourself to that rain.”
Several residents in the capital confirmed the occurrence of black rain, in the comments to Pentón’s tweet.
“And with a very noticeable metallic smell. This was in Boyeros”, specified the activist Camila Rodríguezresident in Havana.
Twitter user ABBA, in responses to Penton’s post, shared photos of black water and affirmed that in the area of El Cotorro the black rain was also perceptible.
In a Facebook post, activist Manuel de la Cruz also confirmed the fall of black rain in the municipality of El Cotorro.
“In Havana, the clouds formed by the toxicity of the fire drop black drops. They stain my hat that cost 500 pesos. While I get wet, I stop a car that wants to charge me 150 pesos from Cotorro to Havana”, De la Cruz reported..
Likewise, the Facebook user Michel Dorta Mestre, a resident of El Cotorro, showed in a video the puddles of black water that remained in the street as a testimony to the fall of black rain.
The well-known singer La Diosa, for her part, shared on her Instagram profile, a short video where you can see the black trail left on the ground after the rain.
In this regard, Cuban meteorologist Jorge Félix Hernández Capote explained that as a result of the fire “Pyrocumulus clouds are being generated, which are a type of cumuliform cloud that are produced by fire or volcanic activity.”
“The predominant flow of the wind is from the eastern region, which will carry these clouds to the west (provinces of Matanzas, Mayabeque, Havana, Artemisa and part of Pinar del Río)”, added the specialist.
Hernández Capote considers that this specific context can cause showers and rain activity in these provinces, which can contain high levels of pollutants.
The meteorologist recommends not being exposed to this rain, protecting domestic animals and not using this water.
The fire at the Matanzas Supertanker Base occurred on Friday afternoon when lightning struck one of the crude tanks.
The official number of injured by the fire and subsequent explosions rose to 77 this Saturday afternoon. Also, a deceased is reported and 17 missing firefighters, who were in the closest area trying to prevent the spread of the fire.
The Cuban authorities recognized that the fire is still out of control after the explosion of two oil deposits and asked for international help to manage the crisis.