By Anjali Nayak
On the morning of August 14, an earthquake of 7.2 magnitude struck Haiti. The United States Geological Survey recorded the earthquake struck five miles in the western part of the country from the town of Petit Trou de Nippes. Since then, aftershocks have rippled through the country. According to Haiti’s Civil Protection Agency, at least 1,297 people have been confirmed dead. Although the full extent of the damages is not yet known, hospitals have been extremely overwhelmed. “A building housing medical students, hospital interns and two doctors had collapsed, trapping those who were most needed to provide aid,” said Dr. James Pierre, a surgeon at the hospital Les Cayes.
The Haiti earthquake could not have come at a worst time. The country is yet to recover from a similar earthquake in 2010, which killed 300,000 people. The southern peninsula is still recovering from Hurricane Matthew, which destroyed the country in 2016, not to mention the country is also recovering from political chaos. Haiti has been suffering in political turmoil since President Jovenel Moise was assassinated, therefore the government is not financially equipped to take care of repairs. The unicef organization says, “Even before the earthquake, Haiti was facing multiple crises, including growing political instability, growing gang-related violence and insecurity, civil unrest, and rising food insecurity and malnutrition. All of these challenges were further exacerbated by COVID-19.” The country of Haiti is in a vulnerable state, and the earthquake only adds to the problems citizens of Haiti deal with.