homepage logo

Storm watch: Hispaniola death toll from Isaac climbs to 9

By Staff | Aug 26, 2012

PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti (AP) – The death toll from Tropical Storm Isaac has climbed to nine after authorities in the Dominican Republic reported two deaths Sunday.

Authorities have already reported seven deaths in Haiti, the impoverished country that shares the Caribbean island of Hispaniola with the Dominican Republic.

Early Sunday afternoon, Dominican police reported that two men were swept away by flooded rivers that had burst their banks. One of the victims was identified as Pedro Peralta, a former mayor in Villa Altagracia, a town northwest of the capital of Santo Domingo. His body was recovered Sunday by rescuers on the banks of the Haina River.

Another male victim, whose identity was not disclosed, was swept away by the Yaguaza River, according to Dominican police.

In neighboring Haiti, Joseph Edgard Celestin of Haiti’s Civil Protection Office offered few details Sunday on how each person died in that country but noted that one man was swept away as he tried to cross a river in a village in northern Haiti.

In a separate report, Haiti’s Civil Protection Office said a 51-year-old woman was killed in the southern coastal town of Marigot after a tree fell on her home. A 10-year-old girl was killed in the village of Thomazeau after a wall collapsed on her.

The number of people evacuated due to flooding also rose. More than 14,000 people have left their homes throughout Haiti and another 13,500 people were living in temporary shelters, the Civil Protection Office reported. Some 8,400 evacuees were in the country’s western department, the most populous and where the capital of Port-au-Prince is located.

A dozen houses were destroyed and another 269 damaged, the Haitian government reported. Four people were injured, including a man who fell from a tree.

Impoverished Haiti is prone to flooding and mudslides because much of the country is heavily deforested and rainwater rushes down barren mountainsides.

The center of Tropical Storm Isaac passed Haiti’s southern peninsula early Saturday.

Copyright 2012 The Associated Press.