PORT AU PRINCE, Haiti, CMC – The death toll from Haiti’s encounter with Tropical Storm Isaac over the weekend climbed to 19 as the storm churned its way towards the Mexico posing significant threat to the Northern Gulf Coast.
The Miami-based National Hurricane Center (NHC) in its 1.00 pm (local time) bulletin, said Isaac is 250 miles south of Apalachicola, Florida and is expected to become a hurricane before reaching the Northern Gulf Coast.
Disaster officials confirmed Monday that the death toll from the storm that hit the island late on Friday night into Saturday had climbed to 19, while five others were killed in the neighbouring Dominican Republic.
The head of Haiti’s Civil Protection Office, Marie Alta Jean-Baptiste, said the number of deaths could increase as reports from around the country are finalized. Six people are reported missing and 22 injured.
“Even today, we still had rivers overflowing. We have 50 cars parked in front of the Glace River in the Grand Anse because police are preventing them from crossing the river,” she said during an interview on a private radio station here.
Media reports said that some of the Haitians died because their homes fell on top of them. Haiti, which is recovering from the powerful earthquake that killed an estimated 300,000 people in 2012 and left more than a million others homeless, is prone to flooding and mudslides because much of the country is heavily deforested and rainwater rushes down barren mountainsides.
Assessment teams fanned the country to assess loss of crops and homes throughout the country where 390,000 quake evacuees remained under tents in the quake-battered capital.
Those killed in the storm included a young man who was covered in a landslide in DonDon, a town in northern Haiti, and a 10-year-old girl who was killed when a wall collapsed on her at her home north of Port au Prince.