Again in Haiti, another severe earthquake, hundreds more died – and the number of victims threatens to rise dramatically.
A magnitude 7.2 earthquake on Saturday (August 14) killed at least 300 people, injured more than 2,000 and destroyed several homes southwest of the island.
As aid workers search for survivors, Haiti could be hit by the next catastrophe earlier this week: the National Hurricane Center predicts the arrival of tropical storm Grace on Monday afternoon and early Tuesday (local time).
Jerry Chandler, head of the National Civil Defense Agency, said “this is likely to get worse as the country is on the brink of two consecutive disasters – a magnitude 7 earthquake and an impending storm.”
Satellite imagery predicts that the Dominican Republic will come from the southeast, Haiti and Cuba, and that their base will reach the Florida coast.
For the country already severely affected by the earthquake, the approaching storm is another bad news: there is a risk of heavy rain and flooding – Grace’s “forerunner” Fred caused flooding on August 11 in the Dominican Republic and Haiti. About 400,000 people were without electricity and water supply was cut off.
A severe earthquake in 2010 brings back memories of a devastating earthquake that killed at least 220,000 people in Haiti. This time, too, the US Agency for Development Cooperation (USAID) issued a red alert because of the large number of victims to be feared.
Reports from several cities in the Southwest: A nightmare!
The G portal “Gazette Haiti” reported five deaths in the city of Aquinas on Saturday afternoon, including nine children aged between five and seven.
An eyewitness from Les Cayes, southwest of one of the largest cities in the country, told the Heidi Press Network about the dilapidated houses and hotels. Many were buried beneath the rubble.
According to the “Gazette”, members of the Nippon Department, the epicenter of the quake, sent an SOS call to authorities as hospitals were overburdened.
According to a development worker at the site, the earth shook for about 17 seconds. Many earthquakes with a magnitude of more than 5 then shook the earth. The first tsunami alert was later lifted.
At 8:30 a.m. (local time), Ulrik and Reinhard Schauler, two German development workers who had lived in Haiti for many years, described to Bild: “We were sitting at home this morning with books, glasses, and possibly everything falling off the shelf. We’ll be out of there in a little while. Several earthquakes followed.
Central Government: “Avoid the affected area”
The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC)’s search and rescue operations were particularly focused on the affected cities around Jeremy and Les Cayes, as people may still be trapped there. The organization also sent emergency experts. Relief supplies are available to at least 4,500 people. In addition, emergency supplies are stored and available in Panama and the Caribbean.
Interim Prime Minister Ariel Henry said he went to the Grand Ann’s port and flew over the city of Les Cas to find out the extent of the damage. He declared a month-long state of emergency. The Organization of American States (OAS), Colombia, Argentina, Mexico, Canada and the United States provided assistance.
“America is a close and lasting friend to the Haitian people. We will be there after this tragedy,” US President Joe Biden said in a statement. “We extend our deepest condolences to all those who lost loved ones or destroyed homes and businesses.”
The federal government has called for the evacuation of affected areas in the southwestern part of the island state. “Many deaths and injuries and severe damage to buildings and infrastructure are expected. There are still strong earthquakes,” the Foreign Office warned Saturday evening.
Travel to Haiti has long been strongly encouraged.
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