Filed under: Environment, Poverty | Tags: Flooding, Gonaives, Haiti, Hurricane Hanna
One of my good friends is currently in Haiti, doing important work in the Haitian microfinance sector. She reported a few days ago that, because of Hurricane Hanna, flooding has become a major issue in parts of Haiti and that some communities are literally cut off from the rest of the country. In her words, “no one has been able to come and go” anywhere since the hurricane hit. This is particularly true in the historic city of Gonaives, which has been devastated by flooding. Unfortunately, there is little time for Haiti to recover from the effects of Hanna, as Hurricane Ike is expected to hit the country by early next week.
Here in the United States, we occasionally get riled up about hurricanes when they threaten to make landfall, but what is it like for people in the Caribbean and Gulf who are impacted by every single storm that develops in the region? It would seem that some of these communities are in a perpetual state of recovery, a state that no doubt contributes to the poverty that exists in disparate places like Haiti.
The Associated Press’s Jonathan M. Katz reports from Haiti:
Floodwaters frustrated efforts by Argentine peacekeepers to distribute aid Thursday at orphanages marooned by Tropical Storm Hanna, confining them to their base as desperate people begged for food and water outside.
The official death toll doubled to 137 as Hanna moved north with near-hurricane winds on a path toward the southeastern U.S. coast, with most of the deaths coming in the flooded port city of Gonaives, which had been almost entirely cut off by floodwaters from Hanna.
Another 22 deaths were confirmed in areas surrounding the coastal city. The rest of the deaths were scattered across the country.
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