Death toll climbs from Haiti earthquake

Damage caused to infrastructure in the 2010 Haiti earthquake

The death toll has climbed to 15 and more than 300 people injured as Haitian officials on Monday assessed the damage caused by the 5.9 magnitude earthquake, and several related aftershocks that has impacted the country since Saturday, October 6.

The Directorate of Civil Protection (DPC) said the “partial assessment of the earthquake is 15 dead” and that most of those killed were in Port-de-Paix, to the north-west  of the capital.

It said at 333 people were injured and treated in hospitals in the north west and that more than 7,000 houses have been destroyed or damaged.

The 5.9 magnitude earthquake on Saturday night was followed by several aftershocks, with one registering 5.2 and another 4.2

The DPC said that the quake caused the damage to the central police station of Port-de-Paix and that Civil Protection teams are at work across assessing the damage.

President Jovenel  Moise, accompanied by several ministers including Prime Minister Jean Henry Céant  visited areas devastated by the quake.

Caribbean leaders offer condolences

St. Lucia government

Meanwhile, the leaders of countries within the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) sent condolences to the government of Haiti following the quake, the strongest to hit the country since the devastating 7.3 earthquake in 2010.

St. Lucia’s Prime Minister Allen Chastanet called on his citizens to keep the people of Haiti in “all our thoughts and prayers.

“Right now, the fear is that there will be strong aftershocks. These are our brothers and sisters in Haiti who have suffered immensely and are now living in fear and this may create panic. We also know that the people of Haiti are still recovering from the devastating 2010 earthquake.

“We must continue to offer support where we can, especially at the OECS and CARICOM levels. Our deepest condolences go out to the families of the victims and to those injured in this most recent earthquake,” he said in a statement.

The Bahamian government

The Bahamas government said it is in contact with The Bahamas’ Embassies in Haiti and Cuba as it relates to the safety of Bahamians. “Initial reports from our Embassies indicate that Bahamians residing in Haiti and Cuba are safe.  Further, the Commonwealth of The Bahamas has extended sincere sympathy to the Republic of Haiti following the devastating impact of this tragic event. The Ministry will endeavor to inform the general public of new developments relating to this issue as deemed necessary,” the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said in a statement.

The US government

The United States has also indicated a willingness to assist as it send condolences to all affected in Haiti. “The United States and Haiti are strategic partners and friends, and we stand ready to assist in the relief effort, if requested,” Washington said.

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