How Haiti’s 5.9 Magnitude Earthquake Will Impact Your Travel
By DeAnna Taylor
Over the weekend, a 5.9 magnitude earthquake devastated the northwest coast of Haiti, in Port-de-Paix. The quake was so strong that it could be felt in the capital city of Port-au-Prince. However, no major damage was reported there.
The earthquake struck on October 6, with a span of 12 kilometers. Haiti is prone to earthquakes as it sits adjacent to major fault lines along the “Ring of Fire.” This is a horseshoE-shaped belt running around the Pacific Ocean where a large number of earthquakes and volcanic eruptions occur.
A strong aftershock sent scared residents fleeing into the streets on Sunday in Port-de-Paix, where most of the casualties took place. As of Monday, the death toll had risen to 15 and over 333 people injured. It was reported by the Civil Protection agency that over 7,000 homes had been damaged or destroyed.
Haitian President, Jovenel Moisse, made a statement early Monday morning. ” According to the first reports by the Civil Protection, there is damage to the Far North of the island. I am working closely with authorities for an appropriate response.”
The Civil Protection agency added: “Our teams from north and south are witnessing a state of panic in some cities.”
The Foreign and Commonwealth Office offered updated advice for those looking to travel to the region, stating that Haitian emergency services are ill-equipped to cope with this kind of major disaster. “Should a hurricane strike Haiti, basic services such as transport and communications are likely to be severely disrupted. Flash floods and landslides regularly occur.
If major earthquake occurs close to shore, you should follow instructions of local authorities, bearing in mind that a tsunami could arrive within minutes. ”
The island is still feeling the effects from the massive earthquake that struck in 2010, killing over 200,000.
Let’s keep Haiti in our prayers as they prepare to deal with this horrible disaster in the weeks and months to come.
DeAnna Taylor is a criminal defense Attorney turned travel writer. The Charlotte native recently completed one year abroad working as an English teacher in South Korea. Her hobbies include fitness, traveling to new countries, and trying new foods.