Thousands feared dead in Haiti quake; many trapped - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Thousands feared dead in Haiti quake; many trapped



















PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti. - Haitians are piling bodies along the devastated streets of their capital after a powerful earthquake flattened the president's palace and the main prison, the
cathedral, hospitals, schools and thousands of homes. Untold numbers are still trapped.
     
President Rene Preval says he believes thousands of people are dead even as other officials give much higher estimates, though they were based on the extent of the destruction rather than firm counts of the dead.
     
His prime minister, Jean-Max Bellerive, tells CNN: "I believe we are well over 100,000," while leading senator Youri Latortue tells The Associated Press that 500,000 could be dead. Both admit they have no way of knowing.
     
The magnitude 7 quake struck Tuesday afternoon.

U.S. scrambling to help Haiti after quake

The U.S. is gearing up to help Haiti in the aftermath of its 7.0 earthquake.
     
The U.S. Agency for International Development says it's sending a disaster assistance response team, and is activating its search and rescue partners in Virginia and Los Angeles. The State
Department and the U.S. Southern Command are helping AID coordinate.
     
Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton says the U.S. is offering full assistance to Haiti -- civilian and military. A State Department spokesman says the U.S. embassy there is unaffected, and trying to make contact with the Haitian government. It's also trying to account for Americans in Haiti.

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