HU16 Albatross Helps After Earthquake In Haiti – Proving The Usefulness And Need For A National Disaster Relief Program Involving Waterbirds
When it comes to earthquake preparedness there is one resource that can play an important role in the recovery efforts immediately after, but also long term after the quake occurs. In states like Alaska and Washington where much of the population is around accessible waterways, seaplanes and flying boats are that resource.
One of the aspects of large scale earthquakes is its ability to wipe out land- based transportation routes and take down the means to repair them for an extended period of time. The land-based only approach has the major weakness of not being able to move material, supplies, rescuers and patients in the time frames most needed. An example in recent history of how seaplanes and flying boats played and continue to play just such a critical role is below in the numerous links and Youtube videos along with this story.
[pullquote align=”right” cite=”” link=”” color=”” class=”” size=””]In one particular community the first medical team arrived from Florida direct to Haiti with 2 tons of supplies via a Grumman Albatross.[/pullquote]
The Haiti Earthquake Of 2010
In the Haiti 7+ MW earthquake of 2010, the sole airport was able to stay functional, but for much of the outlying areas many of the much needed supplies that arrived at the airport ended up being delayed in getting to survivors and people in need, because the road infrastructure was so severely damaged. In one particular community the first medical team arrived from Florida direct to Haiti with 2 tons of supplies via a Grumman Albatross. The goods were delivered directly to the beach and the community it was needed most. It bypassed all the devastation and delivered what was needed right to the spot. The Albatross even flew out some injured. »Here is their story«
The 111th Congress mentioned and recognized the efforts of the crews and countless volunteers for making this amazing humanitarian effort possible. See the PDF here.
My name is Sky Terry and as a Contributing Editor I will write on topics concerning the use of Seaplanes and Flying Boats in Emergency & Disaster Relief. During 5 years in the Army I served in line of sight communications as well as a combat life saver. I am a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) and long time firefighter with SAR experience. I got involved with General Aviation through the developments after Hurricane Katrina, causing the birth of the Emergency Seaplane Response Plan (ESRP). ESRP continued to grow which got me in touch with Air Care Alliance, where I gave a presentation in New Mexico. This all lead to my contacts with general aviation and seaplane people, eventually culminating in the first ever joint disaster exercise between WA and CA. I am the NW Regional Emergency Services Director with EVAC- Emergency Volunteer Air Corps .