What caused the Haiti earthquake so devastating? There was a minimum of 200.000Haitian people were killed. There was no disaster preparedness indeed. The Haiti earthquake happened in 12 January 2010. The magnitude was 7.0 and the epicenter was only southwest of the capital city of Haiti, Port Au Prince. Hispaniola is the island where Haiti is located in. There is bordering nation called the Dominican Republic that was included 2/3 of the entire island. Therefore the rest of 1/3 belonged to Haiti. Many people of Haiti resided around the capital city.
Haiti was located on exact plate boundaries of North America and Caribbean plate. It was the hardest moment in Haiti since past century. Earthquake has not been happened in Haiti since past 2.5 century. Enriquillo Plantain Garden Fault Zone (EPG FZ) was the fault that was regarded as the cause for the Haiti earthquake. However, there were no evident of break on its fault zone. Therefore, that could be taken place inside of the deep underground involving another fault line.
Earthquake can be happened in the fault zone. The location of the epicenter was inside inhabited location and the typical houses were made of poor constructed structure.
Haiti Earthquake: The Cause
Since Haiti was positioned in a complex fault zone, it might be involving with the motion on deep underground. There was no evidence of rupture on EPG FZ in the ground. The micro plate beneath the ground might be the cause as the quake was happened under the ground.
The study within May 2010 released that the quake was happened due to slippage on new faults in depth beneath the ground connected with well-known EPG FZ. This fault was a result of a century of left lateral forces that was connected with plate boundary structure.
EPG FZ was a fault zone that separated the Caribbean and Genova microplate as extension of North American tectonic plate. When there was no rupture in the zone, there was possibility of hidden fault underground. Under the city of Leogane city, there was Leogane fault. The fault was underground that was hidden and believed the quake was caused in this fault. The movement of microplate that grind over many years has kept large tension and suddenly it slipped causing an earthquake.
The result was worsened by the condition of resident living places that was constructed in low construction. It gave a much more lethal effect towards people living inside it. The danger of earthquake was that it was originated from under the ground. It trembled the land and flattened the houses over it. Even more, earthquake could not be predict long before it happened. The minimum warning was meant that they could not prepare their own safety. When a nation is equipped with warning system, it could be less than 50 % that the casualties could be cut. However, there was hardly any measurement to predict it.
7.0 magnitude was meant intense. Slippage on the underground what caused the Haiti earthquake might be caused a long time of gathering forces by micro plate and tectonic plates such as Caribbean and another continental tectonic plate. Haiti was indeed the third world country that could not expect such large earthquake caused by seismic motion inside the geological rocks underneath them.