The Humanitarian Coalition is closely monitoring the progress of Hurricane Irma as it makes its way through the Caribbean Islands. Already, Antigua and Barbuda, St. Martin/St. Marteen and Puerto Rico, among others, have felt the devastating effects of this Category 5 storm, which has claimed at least 13 lives.
“As Irma heads towards the Dominican Republic, Haiti and Cuba, our member agencies are preparing for the worst, but hoping for the best,” said Richard Morgan, Executive Director of the Humanitarian Coalition. “Staff on the ground have begun stockpiling materials and working with government agencies in evacuating people and providing safe shelter from the storm.”
Haiti in particular is a major concern, as the island nation continues to recover from last year’s Hurricane Matthew, which killed more than 500 people. The nation is one of the poorest in the world, with little infrastructure to be able to deal with the potential damage the storm may have.
In addition to the destructive winds, the potential for flooding is worrisome, as it could contaminate the water supply, leading to disease outbreaks.
With winds reaching 300 km/hr, Irma is the most powerful hurricane ever recorded in the Atlantic Ocean.
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