Assessing the needs and damage in wake of Hurricane Matthew

Concern responded to crisis in Haiti after Hurricane Matthew. Photo: Concern Worldwide
Concern responded to crisis in Haiti after Hurricane Matthew. Photo: Concern Worldwide

Hurricane Matthew has left destruction and displacement in its wake in Haiti. Five people are dead, 350,000 are in need of assistance and it's feared that up to five million people may be affected. Concern’s 130-strong team is on the ground assessing the needs and damage.

Hurricane Matthew has now left Haiti behind and is powering over the Bahamas and towards Florida. However dangerous conditions and risks to human life and infrastructure prevail on the island.

Preliminary figures show that five people have died, ten have been injured and one person is missing. Over 15,000 displaced people have been moved to 152 shelters. Meanwhile damage to agriculture, infrastructure and homes has been reported as severe in certain areas. 

Many rivers have flooded and a national road into the capital has been cut following the collapse of the La Digue bridge. Communications are severed between the Grand'Anse and the rest of the country and telephone communication is very limited in other parts. Schools remain closed until 10 October.  

Risks remain

The hurricane may have passed but the damage may continue. Continuous rain, strong winds and extremely dangerous sea conditions with waves of up to 10 feet continued yesterday, and heavy to extreme downpours may occur over the next day or so. This means that the risk of severe flooding accompanied by mudslides and coastal flooding remains.

Concern on the ground

Our teams are on the ground, working with the government and partners to assess the needs and damage.

In the La Gonâve community, where 150 people were staying in temporary shelters, we dristribued blankets to those forced from their homes.

Concern staff on the ground in Haiti assessing the damage caused by Hurricane Matthew. Photo: Concern Worldwide.
Concern staff on the ground in Haiti assessing the damage caused by Hurricane Matthew. Photo: Concern Worldwide.

And in the Grand Ravine area, drainage channels strengthened by Concern in recent years have held strong. This has cut the risk of sewage contaminating drinking water, and will protect residents from disease. People in Grand Ravine have also been following the safety advice passed on by Concern in recent days.

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