Cuba evacuates 10,000 tourists as Irma approaches


 Share This On:


Tourists are evacuated by bus ahead of Hurricane Irma in Caibarien, on the north coast of central Cuba, Thursday, Sept. 7, 2017. (Photo: AP)

(AFP) — Cuba has evacuated 10,000 foreign tourists, many of them Canadians, from beach resorts and raised its disaster alert level to maximum as Hurricane Irma rapidly approaches the Caribbean’s biggest island on Thursday.

Most of the tourists were evacuated from around the beaches and cays in the exposed east and centre of the island, the tourism ministry said.

Among the evacuees were more than 6,000 vacationers who were relocated to Vardarero and Havana, located outside the danger zone, given the hurricane’s probable trajectory.

A further 2,400 tourists were transferred from the exposed eastern province of Camaguey to facilities in the interior, it said.

“Most Canadian visitors, who represent 60 per cent of the total, have absolute protection” in the areas where they have been taken, Tourism Minister Manuel Marrero said.

In recent days, Canadian tour operators have repatriated some of their clients, he said.
Irma, packing winds of 185 miles per hour (295 kilometres per hour), has left a trail of devastation across small islands in the Caribbean, killing at least nine people.

It is set to sideswipe Cuba in the early hours of Friday morning.

The capital Havana, with a population of two million, is outside the probable trajectory and has been put on a lower level of alert by the authorities.

According to the US National Hurricane Centre, the eye of Irma is unlikely to touch Cuba.



St. Lucia News Online firmly discourages any commentary or statements that are libelous, disruptive in nature or incites others to violate our Terms of Use. Any submissions made on our comment section, are solely the views of the individual and not from St. Lucia News Online.

This article was posted in its entirety as received by This media house does not correct any spelling or grammatical error within press releases and commentaries. The views expressed therein are not necessarily those of, its sponsors or advertisers.