Monday, 10 December, 2018

Haiti hit with 5.9 magnitude earthquake

A woman stretches out her arms in prayer as balances a stone on her head as a form of penance during a Good Friday ritual in Ganthier Haiti 5.9 quake strikes Haiti, shaking & damaging buildings
Ellis Copeland | 08 October, 2018, 15:00

A local official said at least eight people died in Port-de-Paix on the northern coast near the epicenter of this morning's quake.

Haiti President Jovenel Moise said on Twitter Sunday that civil protection brigades were working to clear debris.

Some of the injuries were sustained when people panicked after the quake, the civil protection agency said.

This is Haiti's biggest quake since the 7.3 magnitude natural disaster struck near the capital, Port-au-Prince, in 2010 that killed over 230,000 of people and cost the already impoverished nation US$7.8 billion to $8.5 billion in damage.

Four others were killed in the town of Gros-Morne, about 50 kilometers to the southeast. He also said the government had sent water and food.

The one-two punch of a magnitude 5.9 quake in northern Haiti on Saturday that destroyed houses and killed at least 12 people followed by a strong 5.2 magnitude aftershock on Sunday has residents anxious about returning to their cracked cinderblock homes for fear they will collapse. Port-de-Paix is the capital of the department.

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Damage was also reported at the police station in Port-de-Paix, and parts of a hospital and an auditorium collapsed in Gros-Morne.

There has been a report of at least one death, Frantz Duval, a journalist with the Haitian newspaper Le Nouvelliste, said on Twitter.

Images of damaged homes and partially destroyed buildings were circulating on social media, but AFP was not immediately able to confirm their authenticity.

This morning he told his 158,000 followers that he was en route to Port-de-Paix and Gros-Morne.

The building's guard, who was sleeping at the time of the quake, was killed. A vastly larger magnitude 7.1 quake damaged much of the capital in 2010 and killed an estimated 300,000 people.

A woman watching the scene, 49-year-old Rosette Jerome, said no one in her neighborhood had been killed "but a child was seriously injured when a piece of the wall fell on it". Overall, around five million people were displaced by the quake when it struck the poorest country in the western hemisphere.

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