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Quake Rocks Haiti, Causing Widespread Damage


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SANTO DOMINGO, Dominican Republic — A fierce earthquake struck Haiti late Tuesday afternoon, causing a crowded hospital to collapse, leveling countless shantytown dwellings and bringing even more suffering to a nation that was already the hemisphere’s poorest and most disaster-prone.


The powerful earthquake of 7.0 magnitude rocked Haiti just before 5 p.m. Eastern time, 10 miles southwest from the densely populated capital of Port-au-Prince, according to the United States Geological Survey. But damage to the capital city of 2 million people was apparently widespread, according to reports from the scene.


Tequila Minsky, a photographer based in New York who was staying the Oloffson Hotel in Port-Au-Prince, said that a wall at the front of the hotel had fallen down, killing a passerby, and that several nearby buildings had collapsed, trapping people.


There were at least a dozen aftershocks — the worst two were 5.9 and 5.5 magnitude — that followed in the next hour, and more were expected, according to David Wald, a seismologist with the survey.


“The main issue here will probably be shaking,” Mr. Wald said, “and this is an area that is particularly vulnerable in terms of construction practice, and with a high population density. There could be a high number of casualties.”


According to several news reports, a large hospital in the capital had collapsed, and people were screaming in streets full of rubble.


Haiti’s ambassador to the United States, Raymond Alcide Joseph, said in an interview on CNN that the country’s first lady, Elisabeth Débrosse Delatour, called the Haitian consul general in Miami to report that although she and the president, René Préval, were fine, the presidential palace and the nation’s ministry of commerce were damaged.


“These are very sturdy buildings,” Mr. Joseph said. “So if those buildings are damaged, can you imagine what’s happened to all these flimsy abodes around Port au Prince in the hillsides. I say it’s a major catastrophe.”


Mr. Joseph said that he had also spoken to the secretary general of the presidency, Fritz Lonchamps, who told him he was driving through Port au Prince when the earthquake struck.


“Buildings started to collapse right and left around him,” Mr. Joseph said. “He said, ‘Mr. Ambassador, tell the world it is a catastrophe of major proportion.’”


The last earthquake of this magnitude to hit Haiti occurred in 1751. But seismologists have known for several years that a major earthquake was possible, if not imminent.


Elsie St. Louis-Accilien, the director of the Haitian Americans United for Progress in Queens, N.Y., said that she was able to reach the director of Ofatma hospital, in Port-au-Prince. “They are trapped inside,” Ms. St. Louis-Accilien said in a telephone interview. “They were pretty shaken, but they were relieved to be alive.”


She said that the director said that there was “a lot of smoke, a lot of dust,” and that her phone has been ringing nonstop. “People are calling me, elected officials are calling, asking what we can do.”


The White House said President Obama was informed of the earthquake at 5:52 p.m. He directed his staff to begin preparations in case humanitarian assistance is needed. The State Department, the United States Agency for International Development and the United States Southern Command began working to coordinate an assessment, aides said.


“My thoughts and prayers go out to those who have been affected by this earthquake,” Mr. Obama said in a statement. “We are closely monitoring the situation and we stand ready to assist the people of Haiti.”


you can read more here: http://www.nytimes.com/2010/01/13/world/americas/13haiti.html?ref=global-home





This is very very sad. Haiti is such a poor country



btw I'm impressed we got real news and no one posts about it

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QUAKE ROCKS HAITI causing widespread damage


Thank you LORE for starting a thread about it. :) (I would have posted something about it later today when I had the time to do so).


I heard about this disaster this morning and watched it over the news before leaving. It is really terrible - HAITI that is such a poor country hit by a major flood some years ago washing away entire villages. The world soon forgot about that disaster. Hopefully this time it will be different. My heart goes out to the victims.

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"The people of Haiti will be desperate for help and assistance"

January 13, 2010 4:24 pm

Chris writes about the Haiti earthquake


I visited Haiti with Oxfam a few years ago. It's a country of extreme poverty and brutal living conditions. Most people in Port-au-Prince live in tin shacks. The earthquake that has struck Haiti will have turned the city into an unimaginable hell. The people of Haiti will be desperate for help and assistance. You can make a donation towards Oxfam's Haiti Earthquake Appeal at the following website:





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Coldplay and Emily Eavis join Oxfam appeal for Haiti earthquake

January 13th, 2010 at 4:11 pm.



Coldplay singer Chris Martin and Glastonbury Festival organizer Emily Eavis have joined Oxfam’s call for funds to help those affected by the devastating earthquake in Haiti.


Chris Martin, who travelled to Haiti with Oxfam in 2002 to meet coffee farmers supported by the charity, said:


“I visited Haiti with Oxfam a few years ago. It’s a country of extreme poverty and brutal living conditions. Most people in Port-au-Prince live in tin shacks. The earthquake that has struck Haiti will have turned the city into an unimaginable hell.


“The people of Haiti will be desperate for help and assistance. You can make a donation at http://www.oxfam.org.uk.”


The band will make a donation to the Oxfam appeal today, and Glastonbury have also donated to the appeal.


Emily Eavis, who was in Haiti with Chris at the same time, added:


“I visited Haiti with Oxfam in 2002 and it’s the poorest place I’ve ever been by a long way - it seems doubly unfair that it should be hit by such a devastating earthquake, especially after the hurricanes of the last two years. They do not have the resources needed to cope with a disaster of this scale, that is what makes this so much worse.


“I know how hard people there work to try to survive: they have an incredible spirit and face hardship head-on without self pity. I can’t imagine how they are coping now.


“Glastonbury is supporting Oxfam’s appeal for Haiti - if you go to the website http://www.oxfam.org.uk you can leave a donation.”


Oxfam today launched an appeal for millions of pounds as it geared up its response to the devastating earthquake in Haiti.


The extent of the devastation is still unclear but local officials are reporting a catastrophe of major proportions. Thousands are feared dead, millions are affected, and major buildings - such as the presidential palace - have collapsed.


Oxfam has a 100 strong-team working across Haiti - including 15 emergency specialists - and will be responding with public health, water and sanitation services to prevent the spread of waterborne disease. It also has links with a large network of community volunteers who can get aid to affected people quickly.


Oxfam has emergency stocks pre-positioned in Panama and in Bicester, Oxford and is primed to send them to the quake zone if needed.


People can donate by calling 0300 200 1999, online at http://www.oxfam.org.uk and at their local Oxfam shops.

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You can donate to Haiti relief work via Red Cross


Links / addresses to make donations to relief work in HAITI:




(Help the ICRC) Link to that page: http://www.icrc.org/web/eng/siteeng0.nsf/html/helpicrc


Danish Red Cross has a telephone line open where you can support the relief work in Haiti with 150 DKK by making a telephone call to phone 90 56 56 56. I just made that call.


You can also donate money to Haiti via http://www.unicef.org

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If you choose to donate money to a charity, make sure the money is actually going to the Haitian people. Often non-profits will have a few executives that make six-figure salaries and just forward the money to the government of the nation in question - and government officials are corrupt, and the money won't make it to the individuals that are suffering.




Go here first. This helps you find the most effective charities!

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The other thing I feel a need to mention (because I'm very much into economics) is that money isn't always useful. Here's why:


Assuming governments and individuals flood Haiti with cash, each extra unit of money will become worth slightly less than the last unit. It's the law of diminishing returns. This is why it's very important to study the charity you donate to - make sure they aren't just "throwing money" at the problem. There should be food, shelter, clothing, and medical equipment purchased first, then flown into Haiti.

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Red Cross: up to 3-M affected by Haiti quake


From GMA News.TV:


» UN mission chief in Haiti appears to have died in quake


» Haiti quake new blow for country mired in misery


» DFA having difficulty finding out if there are Filipino casualties in Haiti


» Many casualties expected after big quake in Haiti


» Strong quake hits Haiti, collapsing hospital





(01/13/2010 | 09:26 PM - GMA News.TV)


GENEVA — Haiti's devastating earthquake has left an estimated 3 million people in need of emergency aid, a Red Cross official said Wednesday, as aid groups and governments scrambled to send tons of disaster relief to the impoverished Caribbean nation.


Humanitarian officials said the proximity of the quake's epicenter, only 10 miles (15 kilometers) from the capital Port-au-Prince, and Haiti's crumbling infrastructure meant it was impossible to gauge exactly how many people might be dead or wounded.


"There's probably 3 million people potentially affected," said Paul Conneally, spokesman for the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent societies.


The first airlifts to Haiti concentrated on search and rescue efforts and setting up makeshift hospitals.


U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton said the United States was offering full assistance — civilian and military. Prime Minister Gordon Brown said Britain would provide "whatever humanitarian assistance is required," while France, Canada, China, Germany, Mexico and Venezuela pledged immediate support in terms of personnel, cash and supplies.


Germany said it would donate €1 million ($1.45 million), while China pledged $1 million.


One of the first teams expected to arrive Wednesday was 37 search and rescue specialists from Iceland, who are bringing with them 10 tons of their own equipment.


French rescue authorities say 65 clearing specialists and 6 sniffer dogs are leaving for Haiti on Wednesday, while Spain is rushing three airplanes to Haiti with at least 100 tons of tents, blankets and cooking kits. Israel is sending in an elite Army rescue unit of engineers and medics.


The Red Cross said Haiti's disaster relief teams were "completely overwhelmed."


"There's no structured response at this point," spokesman Simon Schorno told The Associated Press.


The United Nations is also deploying a disaster coordination team to Haiti.

Officials were struggling to assess the scale of the disaster amid badly damaged communication networks, said Elizabeth Byrs, a U.N. humanitarian spokeswoman, but it was working with aid agency Telecoms Sans Frontieres to immediately get phone lines working.


There is no electricity in the capital, and roads are filled with obstacles and debris, she added. Port-au-Prince's airport remains open, but the artery connecting it to the city is blocked, so aid officials were still trying to decide on the best way to rush lifesaving assistance.


U.N. agencies and Red Cross societies were trying to send in teams and aid from their regional hub in Panama, while USAID is mobilizing a response group and two urban search and rescue units, Byrs said.


If aid cannot travel over the airport road, assistance may be rerouted through the Dominican Republic, said Charles Vincent, a senior World Food Program official, whose agency plans to airlift tons of high-energy biscuits from El Salvador, enough to feed 30,000 people for a week.


"The first priority is to save lives," Vincent told reporters.


Byrs said the neighboring Haitian cities of Carrefour and Jacmel may also be heavily damaged.


Conneally said his estimate of the Haitians affected relied on previous Red Cross experience in earthquake relief.


"Port-au-Prince has been massively impacted," Conneally said. "There are many, many people trapped in the rubble."


He said emergency shelter and long-term rebuilding efforts could easily require a year of aid work.


At the Vatican, Pope Benedict XVI appealed for a generous international aid response for the quake victims and pledged the Catholic Church's support.


The Christian aid organization World Vision, which has 400 staff in Haiti, said it would immediately distribute supplies it had stored in Haiti for hurricane relief.


Low-lying areas of Port-au-Prince, including the Cite Soleil slum, appeared to be hit worse than neighborhoods higher up the hills, said World Vision spokesman Casey Calamusa.


Maggie Boyer, the World Vision spokeswoman in Haiti, said the moment the quake hit felt "like a truck had run into her building," he added. - AP

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That's all really fucked up. :(

I really feel bad for this people... I will try to help.


Of all the places for this to happen to, the ones who already have so little. My heart goes out to them and they're in my prayers. :disappointed:


You mean pray to God?

Where do you think was God when this horrible thing happened? In the poorest country of all Americas?

I'm not trying to question your belief, but it's good to think about these kind of things once in a while...

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So far there have been posted links etc. to help via OXFAM.org.uk - http://www.redcross.org - ICRC via http://www.icrc.org and http://www.unicef.org.


Now AVAAC has sent out this appeal to donate:


Stand with Haiti‏


From: Luis Morago - Avaaz.org ([email protected])

Sent: 14. januar 2010 02:53:29

To: Nancy Boysen


Dear friends,


Haiti's worst earthquake in 200 years struck yesterday, devastating the capital city, killing thousands and threatening over 3 million people in this desperately poor country.


Haitians are urgently appealing to the world for help -- we’re already in touch with strong local organisations mobilising community-based relief efforts.


Let’s send a worldwide wave of donations to the front lines, to save lives now and help people recover and rebuild. Avaaz will work partners to make sure the help reaches those who need it most. Click below to donate:




Based on expert advice from leading humanitarian NGOs who have been working in Haiti for over 30 years, we'll offer donations to trusted local organizations, including:


Honor and Respect for Bel Air, a big community-based network in Haiti’s capital Port-au-Prince, which is also supported by our friends at the respected Brazilian NGO Viva Rio


Coordination Régionale des Organisations de Sud-Est (CROSE), which brings together some of the most active community groups in the South of Haiti where the earthquake struck hardest. These groups include: women's groups, schools networks and local cooperatives.


In 2008, Avaaz members donated over $2 million for Burmese monks to respond to the devastating Cyclone Nargis. Our money made an incredible difference there -- because it went directly to local people on the front lines of the aid effort.


Times of painful tragedy can bring out the best in us by bringing people together. Let's join with the people of Haiti to help them rescue their communities from this brutal disaster -- act now at this link:





With hope for Haiti,


Luis, Paul, Graziela, Paula, Ricken, Pascal, Alice, Benjamin, Milena and the whole Avaaz team


More information:


Haiti devastated by massive earthquake (BBC):



Thousands feared dead as major quake strikes Haiti (Reuters):



Deadly earthquake hits Haiti (Reuters pictures):





Want to support Avaaz? We're entirely funded by donations and receive no money from governments or corporations. Our dedicated online team ensures even the smallest contributions go a long way -- donate here.


ABOUT AVAAZ Avaaz.org is an independent, not-for-profit global campaigning organization that works to ensure that the views and values of the world's people inform global decision-making. (Avaaz means "voice" in many languages.) Avaaz receives no money from governments or corporations, and is staffed by a global team based in Ottawa, London, Rio de Janeiro, New York, Buenos Aires, and Geneva. Click here to learn more about our largest campaigns. Don't forget to check out our Facebook and Myspace and Bebo pages! You can also follow Avaaz on Twitter!



Donate to Haiti via one of the above organizations or Doctors without borders aka. Médecins sans Frontières - if you can. Any donations - also small ones - are welcome as it is the thought that counts. So please HELP / spread the news of this disaster.

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you can also check out this site: : http://www.globalgiving.org -offers different ways in which your donation can be spent/distributed.


also: you can text a $10 donation to The Red Cross by texting "Haiti" to 90999 OR donate $5 to Wyclef Jean's Foundation by texting "YELE" to 501501


*standard text rates apply


-donation is added on to your cell bill. Worth every penny if you ask me. Think about how many times you went over your minutes and paid way more than $5 or $10.


I should add, I am not sure if they are both available outside of the US, but internationally, you should be able to go to redcross.org to donate.


thanks for your time! :kiss:

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News from Danish text-tv on Thursday 14 January 2010:


At 14:11 Danish time on Thursday 14 January 2010, Danish Red Cross had collected ½ mio Danish Kroner to Haiti. The Danes have been most willing to donate money - and this time via digital media sending text (SMS) messages and donating online via the relief organizations' websites.


Between 20 and 22 TV2 News had a 2-hour-long broadcast about Haiti with focus on the relief organizations. Front figures of all the major relief organizations such as e.g. the Secretary General of the Danish Red Cross were interviewed.


During these two hours Danish Red Cross received 800,000 Danish kroner in donations for Haiti so that the total donations now amount to more than 1.3 mio Danish Kroner. Also the other organizations received donations during these two hours meaning donations of more than 1 million Danish kroner from 20 to 22 o'clock Danish time.


The Secretary General of the Danish Red Cross talked about a problem with a closed airport in the capital Port-au-Prince. USA helped to reopen the airport and flew in some helicopters and personnel to empty a huge airplane that was full of goods and stuff for the relief work, but there had not been the equipment (trucks etc) and personnel needed to empty the airplane and transport the relief goods and equipment to the affected areas. So until USA had helped so that Port-Au-Prince's airport could reopen, the other planes had to land in the neighbouring state the Dominican Republic. HAITI and the DOMINICAN REPUBLIC constitute the island of Hispaniola.


The Secretary General of the Danish Red Cross is heading for the Dominican Republic Friday and from here, he and other representatives of Red Cross and probably also other relief organizations and the press will travel into Haiti in a convoy and will probably arrive on Saturday and then find out what to do to be most efficient and helpful to the victims.


The UN has asked Denmark and Sweden to cooperate to deliver a camp (a field headquarter) for 100 relief workers to Haiti.


It is expensive for the relief organizations to rent planes for bringing relief goods and personnel to the affected area(s) because in time of natural disasters the price for renting these planes increases (due to the increasing demand).


Since the devastating magnitude-7,0 earthquake, Haiti has been hit by 41 aftershocks with a magnitude 4.5+ on the Richter scale.


Haiti's Red Cross estimates the death toll to be 45,000 to 50,000, and 3 million people are expected to be affected.


USA has donated 100 million dollars to HAITI and President OBAMA has promised HAITI that all Americans stand by / will support HAITI - "HAITI will not be forgotten".


Hillary Clinton, the American secretary of state and the Haitian President both talked about this disaster equalling the tsunami in 2004.



Donations can be made to one of these organizations:


http://www.oxfam.org.uk - http://www.redcross.org - http://www.unicef.org - http://www.icrc.org

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HELP HAITI - news from OXFAM's website


Haiti: Aid arrives, but delivery a major challenge 15 January, 2010


Haiti: Oxfam team ready to respond 14 January, 2010


Haiti: Waiting for news 14 January, 2010


I am posting daily updates of the situation in HAITI on the threads: "AID HAITI" and "Updates of the situation in Southeast Asia AND HAITI"



PLEASE DONATE: http://www.oxfam.org.uk/applications/blogs/pressoffice/?p=9906&v=newsblog

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