Port au Prince (Agenzia Fides) – On Tuesday, October 4, hurricane Matthew slammed into Haiti with winds of more than 220 kilometers per hour, sowing desolation and death. The poorest and most vulnerable country in the Americas is still recovering from the devastation wrought by the 2010 earthquake. The torrential rains caused floods, destroying livestock, crops and homes.
According to a first report on October 5, there were five deaths in Haiti. Matthew is considered the worst storm in decades and its violence has left, in addition to the deaths, some 14,500 people displaced, forced to leave their homes. It is estimated that 1,855 homes have been flooded.
The interruption of power lines and communications make it very difficult to quantify the exact extent of the damage.
Martine Haentjens, head of Caritas Internationalis in Haiti, on site at the time of the hurricane, said in a statement sent to Fides: "I have contacted our responsibles in the various regions of the country. In Les Cayes almost everything has been destroyed. We have no news of the town of Jérémie, but it is likely that this region has been seriously affected. As for Port-au-Prince, the situation is under control, the damage is limited. But the country roads are impassable, even the bridges have been destroyed".
Caritas Internationalis has been active in the country with food security projects since the 2010 earthquake, and has already allocated a budget of 50,000 euros to support Caritas Haiti. (CE) (Agenzia Fides, 06/10/2016)