Haiti Sitrep #12

Friday, February 5, 2010

MESSAGE: 7.0 HAITI EARTHQUAKE UPDATE #12 (As at 12:00 hrs, February 5, 2010)


Haiti continues to recover from the Earthquake of January 12, 2010.

The Haitian Prime Minister Jean-Max Bellerive indicated that there were more than 200,000 people dead, 300,000 injuries treated, 250,000 destroyed houses, and 30,000 disrupted businesses as of February 3.

The Government of Haiti remains challenged in managing and coordinating relief efforts and strengthening of the local systems is encouraged.

Relief and response activities although ongoing continue to be impacted by bottlenecks particularly in aid distribution. The Government of Haiti continues to collaborate on response efforts with the various humanitarian aid agencies on the ground. Some guidance has been provided by CDEMA through the Guidelines for Relief Supplies Collection Points, Warehouses & Distribution Centers which seeks to facilitate the distribution of relief supplies to the needy in a timely fashion.
According to the government more than 482,000 persons have migrated out of the capital increasing the demands on infrastructure and healthcare facilities outside the city. The provision of shelter also remains a high priority area given the upcoming start of the rainy season.

The Haitian government has also established settlement sites to house the displaced. Reports indicate that these new settlements have increased demands for public environmental healthcare, water supply and sanitation.

There has also been an increase in the price of basic commodities as migration continues to the rural areas. Schools have also reopened in unaffected areas.

More than 1000 persons daily are reportedly crossing the Jimani border into the Dominican Republic and unaccompanied children are prevalent particularly at the border increasing the risk of them being taken out of the country.

CARICOM through the Regional Response Mechanism (RRM) coordinated by CDEMA is supporting the urgent need for shelter, relief supplies and other humanitarian aid.

Infrastructure and Access

Sixty (60) percent of government and administrative infrastructure has been destroyed adversely affecting recovery efforts. The removal of debris has been identified as priority. The government has also indicated its intent to complete a post disaster needs assessment.

Access and delivery of aid to the residents in outlying areas is a matter of concern. There have been reports of very little aid to date reaching in some areas such as Orangers, Parcques, Beauséjour, Citronnier, Fond d’Oie, Gros Mornes, Cormiers, Petit Harpon, Fond de Boudins and Palmiste à Vin.

Normal customs procedures have started for cargo arriving at Port-au-Prince airport. Due to a buildup of cargo at the airport, goods must now be collected within three days. There are now stricter procedures at the airport and organizations are no longer able to access the ramp or the main cargo yard.

Repairs to the Port-au-Prince port are ongoing. There are large numbers of vessels en route to the port and there are reports of lengthy delays before ships docking. The port at Lafiteau continues to be used by some vessels to deliver goods into Haiti.

The Caribbean Disaster Emergency Management Agency (CDEMA) Coordinating Unit has sourced tents valued at US$250,000 scheduled to arrive in Haiti shortly. Other tents are also being provided through the four sub regional focal points to assist in the provision of relief shelter.
There is, however, a need for more permanent housing in the short to medium term. The establishment of planned settlements, distribution of materials for shelter construction and the clearing of rubble to house the displaced are a priority.

The majority of existing state established settlements are congested which prevents the delivery of immediate basic services.

Health Care

The treatment of trauma cases has declined considerably. Post operative care for the high number of amputees is still needed. A reported 50 persons have been paralyzed from spinal cord injuries.
The spread of communicable diseases remains an area of concern based on existing living conditions. Immunization among children in the Port au Prince metropolitan area has commenced to offset this situation. There are reports of diarrheal disease, respiratory infections, and infected wounds, as well as malnutrition.
CARICOM personnel continue to provide medical support to Haiti through the Centre Sante Bernard Mevs (Route de l’aeroport, entre Village Solidarite) and a Community Hospital in Freres and also a Clinic set up at Food for the Poor Headquarters.
Food and Relief Supplies

Supplies continue to be channeled into the country but there remain delays in clearance. Limited access to outlying districts are affecting delivery to these areas.


The overall security situation remains unchanged. The Haiti National Police has launched a campaign to identify and return escaped prisoners. Growing gang rivalries remain a concern in Port-au-Prince. The Government has extended the state of emergency which expired on 1 February for a further two weeks.


2.1 CARICOM Chair and High level delegates to meet with President Preval
A high level CARICOM delegation headed by of the CARICOM Chairman Roosevelt Skerrit will meet with Haitian President Rene Preval on Saturday February 6 2010. The contingent includes Mr. Edwin Carrington, CARICOM Secretary General, Mr. P.J. Patterson, CARICOM Special Representative on Haiti, Mr. Jeremy Collymore CDEMA Executive Director, Ambassador Colin Granderson Assistant Secretary General for Foreign and Community Relations and Mr. Ivor Nassief Chairman of Invest Dominica Authority. The team will seek to advance plans for Haiti’s recovery and reconstruction in the medium to long term.
2.2 CARICOM Health Ministers convene and advance planning for CARICOM Health Intervention in Haiti
A meeting of the region’s Health Ministers was convened in Trinidad and Tobago on Friday February 5, 2010 to consider, discuss and advance CARICOM’s medium to longer term health intervention proposed to commence in March, 2010.
2.3 Haiti National Contingency Plan Translated to English
Ms. Dawn French the National Disaster Coordinator for NEMO Saint Lucia has been instrumental in successfully translating the National Contingency Plan for Haiti into English. The translation of this document to English is intended to facilitate enhancements and to guide operations. This will be useful for the many humanitarian actors who have been seeking to access the English version and will be an input into strengthening better coordination with Civil Protection in Haiti.
2.4 Response Coordination Support to Haiti Civil Protection Continues
A new rotation of Emergency Operations Centre personnel has been dispatched. The team includes Mr. Sylvan McIntyre of Grenada, Mr. Nicholas Browne, Jamaica and Mr. Horatio Tuitt of the Turks and Caicos Islands.
These individuals replace Mr. Leonard Mobley of the Virgin Islands, Ms. Dawn French the National Disaster Coordinator for NEMO Saint Lucia and Mr. Luke Bethel of the Bahamas.
The outgoing Technical Team has successfully developed, in collaboration with and in support of the Government of Haiti through Haiti Civil Protection, plans in identified priority areas. The plans include Guidelines for Relief Supplies Collection Points, Warehouses & Distribution Centers, Guidelines for the Establishment and Running A Camp Site and Work Programme for Technical Teams from CARICOM. The plans are being reviewed by Haitian Civil Protection for adoption.
The CARICOM Special Coordinator, (BG (R) Earl Arthurs, is scheduled to resume duties on the weekend. He relieves Ms. French who acted as Special Coordinator for an interim period.
Country Support
Several countries have dispatched relief supplies including water, foodstuff and medical supplies for arrival next week for distribution.
• The Government of Guyana has dispatched four (4) forty foot containers
• The Government of Trinidad and Tobago has sent three (3) forty foot containers and,
• The Government of Barbados has shipped (1) one forty foot container.

The CARICOM contingent also continues to assist in:
i. The provision of Medical Services – Over 1,300 patients have received emergency health care including the delivery of twenty three (23) babies. These include operations – major and minor, back slabs to stabilize fractures, skin tractions for fractures, triaging patients, screening stabilizing , immunization and counseling at the Bernard Mevs Hospital and the Community Hospital at Freres as well as the CARICOM clinic at the Food for the Poor Compound. Medical assistance is being provided through the sub-regional focal point, Jamaica.
ii. Relief Distribution through the CDRU team. The Team is also assessing areas for strengthening of CARICOM medical services in Haiti.
iii. Providing Convoy Security – for distribution of food items by CARICOM, Food for the Poor (FFP) and other NGOs.
iv. Supporting the Emergency Centre Operations whose focus continues to be releasing the sustained backlog of relief supplies accumulating at the airport and shelter management.
v. Fostering and facilitating partnerships with NGOs and International Organizations to advance CARICOM’s response support to Haiti. CARICOM personnel on the ground has been participating in several multi-agency meetings held on the ground in Haiti.
vi. Assessing structures through engineering teams with a focus on structures particularly for the vulnerable (poor, elderly, handicapped) to identify areas for repair and reconstruction.
vii. They have also conducted Search & Rescue, responding to fifteen (15) searches which resulted in the rescue of six persons, including two children. The SAR operations have been stood down.

CARICOM has established an account at the First Caribbean International Bank in Barbados, for the channeling of financial aid to support relief efforts the name of the beneficiary is the Caribbean Disaster Emergency Management Agency and the account number is 100 1060 481.
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