Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Further Heavy Rain Threatening Storm-Devastated Haiti

By Rob McElwee

Two weeks after the last devastating storm lashed Haiti, the region is again poised for further heavy rain, strong winds and flooding.

The National Hurricane Center in Miami is forecasting a high risk of a tropical depression developing in the Caribbean in the next 24 hours. There are already some very heavy showers and strong winds affecting Puerto Rico and the US and British Virgin Isles, and these may intensify as they move north-westwards towards the Dominican Republic and Haiti.

The outlook is grim for Haiti, which is holding an official three day period of national mourning for the 425 victims killed by four consecutive storms (Fay, Gustav, Hanna and Ike) since the Atlantic Hurricane season officially began on June 1.

The storms have led to severe flooding and mudslides, and have destroyed a vast percentage of Haiti’s food harvest. The UN has stepped in to provide water and food aid to around a quarter of a million people.

The Hurricane season is due to draw to a close by the end of November, but it is possible Haiti may see a further four or five storms by then.

Source: BBC

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