A month ago, a disastrous earthquake struck Haiti. The 7.2 magnitude earthquake, which devastated the Caribbean country on 14 August, killed at least 1.300 people and injured more than 6, destroyed 7 homes and damaged 5 buildings, including hospitals, schools and churches. After the first quake, the earthquake had two repetitions of lesser intensity in less than an hour. Haiti is not new to devastating earthquakes, just think of the 2010 earthquake.
Why are there always earthquakes in Haiti?
Haiti is located in one of the most seismic places on Earth, at the border between the Caribbean and North American plates. Seismic events in this area are the consequence of the transpressive movement of the fault, or rather of the "rubbing" between the two plates and of the slight compression that occurs.
The 2010 Haiti earthquake
In 2010 Haiti had already been hit by a 7.0 magnitude earthquake with its epicenter 25 km from the capital Port-Au-Prince. From data collected by the International Red Cross and the UN, this catastrophic earthquake would have affected approximately 3 million people, killing 230.000 and leaving 1,5 million homeless.
Seismic in Haiti: still a long way to go
Haiti is still a heavily backward country where resources are scarce and poorly spent. The reconstruction with anti-seismic technologies remains a practice that is still not very widespread and the common building, without a real territorial planning, is done using precast concrete blocks of poor quality. The traditional houses gingerbread with wooden structure and stone, brick or wood fillings, which have given proof of solidity with localized collapses after the earthquake, without loss of human life, only the sign of the early twentieth century bourgeoisie remains close to the colonial center of the capital Port au Prince. These fresh and resistant architectures, suitable for facing the tropical climate and very resistant to atmospheric agents, on the other hand, should also be the constructive model for common buildings.