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Why did so many people die in Haiti's quake?

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Author Topic: Why did so many people die in Haiti's quake?  (Read 77 times)
Contessa Felt
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« on: February 21, 2010, 07:36:18 pm »

But poverty also plays its role, Mr Garratt explains, as it exacerbates a country's or region's vulnerability to such disasters.

In places such as Haiti, where 72.1% of the population live on less than $2 a day, and in cities like Port-au-Prince, where many are housed in poor and densely-packed shantytowns and badly-constructed buildings, the devastation is always expected to be greater.

"These countries have less money to put into buildings and there is less governance ensuring building codes are followed," Mr Garratt explains.

"Corruption can also be an issue and so, even when there are government structures to ensure building codes are followed, there are bribes that enable people to take short cuts.

"Put simply - there are the technical elements of the earthquake and then the social elements on top of that."

Therefore, the fact that the Haiti quake hit close to a poorly-constructed, large urban area was crucial in reducing people's chances of survival.
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