PORT-AU-PRINCE, HAITI – It is the prediction Sean Penn made when appearing on “Larry King Live” about two weeks ago.
The rains have come to Haiti after the magnitude 7 earthquake. The rain has deluged Haiti terrifying Haitians and adding to the post-quake misery for thousands.
He told Larry King on the show that when Haiti gets the deluge of rain, it will be on the verge of what might be the greatest public health crisis in the history of the Western Hemisphere.
“We’re within two weeks from the rainy season,” Penn said. “People have in essence no cover. There are tent cities that are made from rugged tarps on top and sheets on the side. It’s an incredible fire hazard. The camps are wildly overcrowded, a breeding ground for infectious diseases.”
Left – U.S. Actor Sean Penn, center, talks to Lt. Col. Mike Foster, right, while visiting the U.S. 82nd Airborne Division’s forward operating base in Port-au-Prince, Haiti, Friday, Jan. 22, 2010. A powerful earthquake hit Haiti on Jan. 12, killing and injuring thousands. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)
The Associated Press reported today Haiti has seen one of the heaviest rainfalls since the Jan. 12 earthquake, rain has been swamping homeless camps sweeping screaming residents into eddies of water, overflowing latrines and panicking thousands.
The rainy deluge is terrifying families who just two months ago survived the collapse of their homes in the magnitude-7 earthquake.
Now they are struggling to make do in tent-and-tarp camps that officials have repeatedly said must be relocated.
The overnight downpour sent water coursing down the slopes of a former golf course that now serves as a temporary home for about 45,000 people.
“I was on one side (of the tarp), the children were on the other side and I was trying to push the water out,” Jackquine Exama, a 34-year-old mother of seven, said through tears.
“I’m not used to this,” she said.
Penn said people can get involved by going on two different websites.