Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Haiti Unprepared For Hurricane Season

PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti, (UPI) -- Authorities say earthquake-ravaged Haiti is far from ready for big storms that could hit during this year's hurricane season, which officially began Tuesday.

Meteorologists predict the Atlantic Ocean could have at least 15 hurricanes, The Miami Herald reported Tuesday.

An estimated 1.5 million Haitian earthquake victims are living in tent and tarp camps, many in low-lying areas at risk of mud and flooding.

The Haitian government has established just two new emergency relocation camps amid a rush to finish more temporary dwellings on higher ground, the Herald reported.

An estimated 120 camps in Port-au-Prince are at risk of flooding, landslides, or standing water from heavy rain, said Shuan Scales of the International Organization for Migration.

Aid groups said suitable land is desperately needed to relocate camp-dwellers and too few drainage ditches exist to keep storm water flowing away from populated areas.

"We have made progress, but we still are not there yet," Chris Milligan, a U.S. response coordinator said recently in Washington.

Source: UPI

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