Why was Haiti so deadly?
In this article I’m going to discuss why the Haitian earth quake was so deadly. First I will identify the natural factors (both primary and the secondary effects), then discuss the human factors.
There are many reasons why earth quakes are deadly and here are those reasons; the first one may seem quite obvious but the size of the earth quake, also its proximity to the surface, how dense the population is near to the epicentre and whether the area is heavily urbanised and sadly all these are features of the Haiti quake.
But poverty can also take a large toll as it increases a country’s vulnerability. In places like Haiti
where 72.1% of the population live on less than $2 a day, and in place like Port-au-Prince where lots of people are in densely packed shanty towns and badly constructed buildings, things are always expected to be worse in these conditions.
The fact that Haiti’s earth quake was so near to a largely urbanised area of poorly constructed buildings was a big factor in reducting the chances of survival
Port-au-Prince is a big city; with so many buildings destroyed a lot of rubble came down, killing more people.
Getting relief to the people who needed it most was very difficult. Government offices and other key places such as hospitals were destroyed. Many roads were destroyed, and those that weren’t, were blocked with rubble and this wasn’t helped by the fact that the airport was only half-functioning.
The death count was very high – official figures vary from 230,000 to 316,000 people killed, with approximately 300,000 injured, from a population of 9,780,064.
Even though there were quite a lot of search and rescue teams, lots of the people were saved by their neighbours pulling them out of the rubble.
The Red Cross are now helping Haiti to get back on its feet financially, because