USAID Haiti Earthquake Fact Sheet #5

Jan 17, 2010, 23:21 ET from U.S. Agency for International Development

WASHINGTON, Jan. 17 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ --


  • As of 1700 hours local time on January 17, U.S. Urban Search and Rescue (USAR) teams had rescued 30 individuals from collapsed buildings, including one individual rescued at approximately 1615 hours local time and three individuals rescued overnight from the Caribbean Market. To date, international USAR teams have rescued a total of 62 individuals throughout Port-au-Prince.

  • On January 17, USAID/OFDA, in coordination with the U.S. Department of Defense (DoD), facilitated the delivery to Port-au-Prince of 9,600 10-liter water containers to serve 19,200 people, 3,840 hygiene kits to benefit 19,200 people for two weeks, and 200 rolls of plastic sheeting to meet the shelter needs of 10,000 people.

  • To date, USAID/OFDA has provided nearly $63.3 million in humanitarian assistance to Haiti, including a total of $22 million committed on January 17 to the International Organization for Migration (IOM), the U.N. World Health Organization (WHO), and the U.N. World Food Program (WFP) to support emergency relief supply distributions, emergency health interventions, and humanitarian air service and logistics.

  • On January 17, a ship carrying 2,100 metric tons (MT) of P.L. Title II emergency food assistance provided by USAID's Office of Food for Peace (USAID/FFP) arrived in Port-au-Prince. USAID coordinated closely with the U.S. military to ensure safe passage of the vessel through the port and to provide security for the vessel and crew.



Estimated Number of Deaths

65,000 people

GoH(1) – January 17

Estimated Affected Population

Approximately 3 million people

U.N. – January 15

(1) Government of Haiti (GoH)


Total FY 2010 USAID/OFDA Assistance to Haiti for the Earthquake


Total FY 2010 USAID/FFP Assistance to Haiti for the Earthquake


Total FY 2010 USAID Humanitarian Assistance to Haiti for the Earthquake



  • The GoH has identified water distribution as the most urgent need for affected individuals and indicated a preference for provision of water containers and water purification tablets.

  • A shortage of trucks and fuel, exacerbated by the airport's limited capacity to receive, warehouse, and dispatch relief supplies, continues to hamper relief efforts in and around Port-au-Prince. However, according to the GoH, relief supplies must continue to be distributed by road due to the structural instability of earthquake-damaged houses.

  • The GoH and U.N. officials have requested that donor countries collaborate closely with the GoH and the U.N. Stabilization Mission in Haiti (MINUSTAH) to ensure a more effective humanitarian response. In addition, the GoH has required that all distributions for the next two weeks occur through or in coordination with MINUSTAH, primarily due to increasing security concerns.

  • As of January 16, although telephone communication remained irregular, limited cellular service and regular relief coordination meetings had improved coordination among rescue and relief actors.

Search and Rescue Operations

  • U.S. USAR teams deployed on January 17 to eight locations to conduct reconnaissance missions, returning to Hotel Montana, Port-au-Prince University, and several other locations where local residents have identified possible signs of life.

  • A total of 43 international USAR teams, comprising 1,739 rescue workers and 161 rescue canines, are operating in Haiti, reaching a majority of the most affected sites and beginning to expand operations to surrounding areas as of January 17. USAR teams plan to participate in aerial assessments on January 18 in three priority areas outside Port-au-Prince to determine initial search and rescue targets.

Emergency Food Assistance and Relief Supplies

  • Following three days of relief supply distributions, IOM now estimates that 200,000 families, or up to 1 million people, require immediate shelter assistance and emergency relief supplies.

  • From January 15 to 17, distributions have occurred at eight ad hoc sites. The GoH, in consultation with the U.N., is working to identify four fixed distribution sites for resourcing 14 designated settlement sites.

  • On January 16, WFP distributed 20 MT of high energy biscuits (HEBs) to 39,000 beneficiaries in and around Port-au-Prince. On January 17, WFP planned to reach approximately 60,000 people with HEBs. WFP has also started the distribution of hot meals in some places, such as hospitals and schools, and has begun to set up kitchens in settlement sites.

  • On January 17, WFP planned to deliver rice to 6,500 beneficiaries in Jacmel, HEBs to 5,000 beneficiaries in Leogane, and 45,000 ready-to-eat meals to beneficiaries in Petion-Ville, a suburb of Port-au-Prince. On January 18, WFP and IOM plan to expand food and non-food-item distributions to Petit Goave and Grand Goave.

  • On January 17, USAID/OFDA provided $7 million to IOM for the procurement and distribution of emergency relief supplies and to support the organization as the coordinator of all non-food-item and shelter assistance distributions.


  • Partners at the January 17 U.N. Logistics Cluster meeting reported that the first 10,000 gallons of fuel will arrive in Haiti in approximately two days. WFP is constructing two storage sites at the airport in Port-au-Prince, working to identify three additional sites to accommodate humanitarian cargo, and operating five mobile warehouses. WFP encouraged non-governmental organizations (NGOs) to utilize the spaces to enhance coordination and mitigate some security risks.

  • On January 17, USAID/OFDA provided $10 million to WFP in support of a humanitarian air service operation and improved logistics for the overall response.


  • According to the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO), information on the status of hospitals and health facilities remains limited and contradictory. PAHO reports only a limited number of functioning centers, run primarily by international non-governmental organizations. The temporary field hospital at the U.N. logistics base quickly reached full capacity and is no longer accepting new patients. The GoH designated four new locations for international field hospitals.

  • On January 17, the USAID Disaster Assistance Response Team (USAID/DART) reported that U.S. military personnel had escorted a U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Disaster Medical Assistance Team (DMAT) and a USAID health officer to the Port-au-Prince General Hospital to augment health care capacity and deliver supplies, food, and water. Doctors at the hospital report a caseload of more than 2,000 individuals.

  • One USAID/OFDA-provided water treatment unit is serving a field hospital, in accordance with GoH priorities. The USAID/DART is working to station the remaining units at additional priority locations.

  • On January 17, USAID/OFDA provided $5 million to WHO for essential health care services, equipment, and supplies and to help restore the capacity of the GoH Ministry of Health to provide emergency

Water, Sanitation, and Hygiene (WASH)

  • According to the U.N. WASH Cluster, daily water production capacity in Port-au-Prince currently stands at 8 million liters, far below the amount required to meet the drinking water needs of the affected population. The cluster will continue to support water trucking and transition from the use of bottled water once on-site production and treatment capability increases.

  • According to the U.N. WASH Cluster, details from an assessment of the Port-au-Prince treatment plant are forthcoming. Early reports indicate that the treatment plant may not have been completely destroyed. Partners will begin to assess the piped water network capacity on January 18.

  • Water treatment units from a number of sources are also en route to Port-au-Prince, and the WASH Cluster estimates that treatment plants in the pipeline are sufficient to meet water needs.

  • Cluster partners, with assistance from the private sector, commenced water tankering on January 16, providing 250,000 liters to 52 distribution points.

  • USAID/OFDA has provided funding through USAID/Dominican Republic (USAID/DR) for distribution of 10,000 liters of water per day for eight days to earthquake-affected populations. A USAID/OFDA WASH specialist is scheduled to deploy to Haiti in the coming days.

  • USAID/OFDA is also transporting 12 water bladders, each with a 12,000 liter capacity, from USAID/OFDA stockpiles.


  • To date in FY 2010, USAID has provided nearly $111.3 million in humanitarian assistance for the Haiti earthquake, including a USAID/OFDA contribution of approximately $63.3 million and USAID/FFP food assistance valued at an estimated $48 million.

  • On January 12, USAID/OFDA activated a Washington D.C.-based Response Management Team (RMT) to support the USAID/DART that deployed to Haiti early on January 13 to assess humanitarian conditions and coordinate activities with the humanitarian community.

  • DoD has authorized $20 million in overseas humanitarian and disaster assistance appropriations in support of the Haiti earthquake relief effort. DoD has been supporting the humanitarian response through transportation of emergency relief personnel and commodities into Haiti. In addition, several U.S. military ships are currently positioned near Haiti to provide tactical and operational support to the emergency response operation.

  • On January 13, U.S. Ambassador to Haiti Kenneth H. Merten declared a disaster due to the effects of the earthquake. In response, USAID/OFDA provided an initial $50,000 through the U.S. Embassy in Port-au-Prince for the implementation of an emergency response program. USAID/OFDA is providing additional assistance in accordance with the findings of USAID/DART and humanitarian community assessments, as access to affected groups expands over the coming days.


Implementing Partner






Logistics and Relief Supplies

Affected Areas



Search and Rescue

Affected Areas




Affected Areas



Logistics and Relief Supplies

Affected Areas



Logistics and Relief Supplies

Affected Areas



Emergency Response Activities

Affected Areas



Humanitarian Air Service, Logistics and Commodities

Affected Areas



Basic Health Services

Affected Areas


Logistics and Relief Supplies

Affected Areas


Administrative Costs

Affected Areas






14,550 MT of P.L. 480 Title II Emergency Food Assistance

Affected Areas




Affected Areas











(1) USAID/OFDA funding represents anticipated or actual obligated amounts as of January 17, 2010.

(2) Estimated value of food assistance.


  • The most effective way people can assist relief efforts is by making cash contributions to humanitarian organizations that are conducting relief operations. Information on organizations responding to the humanitarian situation in Haiti may be available at
  • USAID encourages cash donations because they allow aid professionals to procure the exact items needed (often in the affected region); reduce the burden on scarce resources (such as transportation routes, staff time, warehouse space, etc); can be transferred very quickly and without transportation costs; support the economy of the disaster-stricken region; and ensure culturally, dietary, and environmentally appropriate assistance.
  • More information can be found at:
    • USAID: – Keyword: Donations
    • The Center for International Disaster Information: or (703) 276-1914
    • Information on relief activities of the humanitarian community can be found at

Public Information: 202-712-4810

SOURCE U.S. Agency for International Development