General blackout in Havana due to an alleged breakdown in a high-voltage line

General blackout in Havana due to an alleged breakdown in a high-voltage line

A power outage left the entire Havana in darkness this Thursday night. Shortly after nine and neighborhood by neighborhood, the Cuban capital went dark, with a few exceptions. Diez de Octubre, San Miguel, Cerro, Centro Habana, Old Havana, Playa, Marianao, Boyeros… From the 14th floor of the Editorial Office of this newspaper, the panorama was as impressive as a satellite image of North Korea at night. .

Not even the government offices, such as those found in the Plaza de la Revolución, nor emblematic places, such as the Capitol, La Cabaña or El Morro, were lit. And areas to which power had not been removed until now, such as neighborhoods near hospitals, were also without power.

Around ten o’clock at night, the Electric Union of Cuba (UNE) communicated what all Havanans knew: that a large part of the capital’s municipalities were “affected without electricity service.” Similarly, it clarified that “this affectation of the electrical service” was not related to “the energy deficit and the scheduled blackouts” and that the causes were being investigated. The UNE had no idea what had happened and that was very worrying.

Under normal conditions, it explains 14ymedio a technician with knowledge of the energy system, in the electricity company they have a way of knowing in real time where a fault occurs and, therefore, what has caused it.

“If the three power sources in Havana were turned off, they have no way of knowing where the fault is or what happened, because if everything was turned off, everything was turned off”

However, he ventures, “if the three power sources in Havana were turned off, they have no way of knowing where the fault is or what happened, because if everything was turned off, everything was turned off.” And he asserts: “Something serious happened there, but really serious.”

Once the service was restored, two hours later, the UNE said that the problem was due to “a fault in the overhead lines of 110 kV [kilovoltios, alta tensión]which affected several substations that feed an important part of the city”.

The explanation did not satisfy the suspicion of the citizens. Sources from this newspaper also reported blackouts in Varadero, the city of Matanzas and Santiago de Cuba.

“I don’t remember that there has been a blackout of this magnitude without there being a cyclone,” a resident of Centro Habana expressed with concern, where the unmistakable bustle of children playing outside the lots and buildings could be heard.

The comments on Telegram to the brief statement from the UNE were limited, but some managed to leave their indignation. “Everyone to the streets! Total, Cuba is a bloc of poverty,” warned the user Dama Bautista.

Indeed, due to the isolated cries in the middle of the night, it was inferred that many Havanans had their pot ready to sound in the middle of the darkness. In Luyanó it was the only place where, until now, some neighbors have carried out the action, as reported in videos on social networks.

From the patrols of black berets that sources from San Antonio de los Baños report to this newspaper having seen “looking for a road to Havana”, it is understood that the fear of a cacerolazo in the capital was widespread among the authorities.

Before that happened, and while wild rumors about the leaders fleeing the country began to circulate on social networks, the power came back on around eleven o’clock at night.

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