Extreme weather: At least 42 dead after floods in Haiti

extreme weather
At least 42 dead after floods in Haiti

Residents wade across a flooded street after heavy rain in Port-au-Prince. photo

© Odelyn Joseph/AP

The hurricane season has only just begun, and a storm is already hitting the Caribbean country, causing a great deal of suffering: several people die and thousands are forced to flee.

The death toll from floods in Haiti has risen to at least 42. Another eleven people were missing, 85 were injured, said the Caribbean state’s civil protection authority on Monday.

Heavy rain over the weekend had caused flooding and landslides in several parts of the country. At least 13,633 homes were flooded, according to civil defense. The region around the capital Port-au-Prince was particularly affected. In the nearby coastal town of Léogâne, 19 deaths were registered, as reported by the Juno7 portal, citing civil defense chief Jerry Chandler.

Haiti is the poorest country on the American continent and repeatedly experiences severe natural disasters – including devastating earthquakes like the one in 2010, which killed more than 200,000 people. Deforestation, primarily for charcoal, also makes the state, which shares the Caribbean island of Hispaniola with the Dominican Republic, more vulnerable to landslides.

Hurricane season has just begun in the region – it lasts from June to November. Arlene, the first tropical cyclone of the season strong enough to be named, formed in the Gulf of Mexico on Friday. It weakened to a storm near Cuba’s west coast on Saturday.


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