Power begins to return to Cuba after Hurricane Ian's hit

STORY: Much of the island of 11 million people was entering its third day without power on Thursday after the brawling storm made landfall, knocking out high-tension wires, flattening homes and obliterating agricultural fields.

At least three people died in the storm in Cuba, state-run media reported.

Throughout densely populated Central Havana on Thursday, neighbors sat in doorways looking for fresh air after a stuffy night inside cavernous apartment blocks.

State-run media reported at mid-day on Thursday parts of Havana had been reconnected to the grid but that some circuits and lines were still damaged, stalling efforts in some areas.

Even before Hurricane Ian hit, Cubans were accustomed to daily power outages, sometimes of eight hours or more, but the prospect of a prolonged blackout would be a major blow to the crisis-racked nation, where food, fuel and medicine are in short supply.

Officials said the country's precarious energy situation, which led to large shortfalls in generation prior to the storm, would not change even if power were immediately restored.