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Haiti - Weather : Appeal to the spontaneous evacuation
03/08/2011 20:25:17

Haiti - Weather : Appeal to the spontaneous evacuation
To 7pm, this evening, the center of the Tropical Storm Emily was located to 16.9 degrees north and 70.6 degrees West. At 257 km South East of Port au Prince (160 miles) with sustained winds (maximum) of 85 km/h (50 mph). Emily is currently stationary but still produces heavy rain on the island of Hispaniola.

Please note that Emily has not yet made its turn toward the north as shown in the forecast models.

253 km (157 mi) of Jacmel
257 km (160 mi) of Port-au-Prince
280 km (174 mi) of Léogâne
330 km (205 mi) of Saint Marc
358 km (222 mi) of the Gonaïves
364 km (226 mi) of Les Cayes

Paul Antoine Bien-Aimé, the Minister of the Interior Territorial Collectivities, appeal the population to evacuate spontaneously before the first impacts of the Tropical Storm Emily to shelter among relatives (friends, parents...). "The first major announcement concerns the spontaneous evacuation," insisted Mr Bien-Aimé. He recalls that the Civil Protection is ready to assist the displaced to leave areas at risk, while encouraging residents living in sensitive areas to go by themselves "for a day or two among friends". M. Beloved also states that the National System of Risk Management is supported by humanitarian actors to address the potential impacts of Emily.

Haiti is since yesterday Tuesday under red alert to heavy rains and strong winds, which are the big enemies of tents and plastic sheeting, said Mr Bien-Aimé.

"The threat is still there," informs the Director of the National Meteorological Centre (CNM). He stated that the winds can reach up to 90 km/h in particular in the department of the West. The Permanent Secretariat of Risk Management asks to the residents of sensitive areas to strengthen the vigilance and to apply safety procedures.

Kevin Kennedy, Humanitarian Coordinator, informs that "we are better prepared now thanks to the joint contingency plan" developed in conjunction with the Haitian Government, with the support of donors and agencies humanitaires. Kevin Kennedy recalls that the system has recently had a mock "SIMEX" with the partners to test the procedures in order to make improvements to the interventions on the ground.

Among the measures taken by humanitarian actors, Kevin Kennedy notes:

  • The deployment of human resources at the level of Emergency Operations Centres departmental (COUD);
  • The activation of the cell of coordination the level of the international community (EJOINT);
  • The prepositioning of tents, sheets, tarps, emergency kits... and food in the Western Department and other departments, also in Panama.
  • The availability of 360 sites that can accommodate 50,000 people for 2 days;
  • Arrangements are being made as part of cholera;
  • Teams of the international community are waiting for the assessment of potential impacts by Thursday;
  • Deployment of civil engineers to the Cap Haitien and Gonaives;
  • Dissemination of information about cyclone by SMS;
  • The UN troops are willing to assist in the evacuation of the cholera treatment centers (CTC) or cholera treatment units (UTC)

Ms. Alta Jean Baptiste emphasizes on the cholera. Indeed, the cholera epidemic can spread further because of flooding that could result of Emily. The MSPP strengthen measures of support throughout the country and enhances the spread of awareness messages. In addition, the Director stated that the Directorate of Haitian Civil Protection is in contact with its counterpart of the Civil Defense of the Dominican Republic. She reaffirms that the latter is concerned face to the likely impacts of Emily. The two national structures at the level of the island are united in the preparation to the eminence of Emily.

PI/ HaitiLibre

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