Leading Causes of the 2010 Destructive Earthquake in Haiti

  • Pierre Darry Versaillot Faculty of Civil Engineering, Czech Technical University, Thakurova 7, Prague 6, 16629, Czech Republic
  • Johane Dorcena Department of Civil Engineering, National Chung Hsing University, No. 145 Xingda Rd., Taichung 40227, Taiwan
  • Lovely Polynice Department of Civil Engineering, National Taipei University of Technology, No.1, Sec. 3, Zhongxiao E. Rd., Da'an Dist., Taipei 106, Taiwan
Keywords: country’s reality, earthquake, Haiti, loss of life and property, main causes, pounding, slums.


On Tuesday afternoon, 12 January 2010 at 16:53 local time, Haiti faced the most disastrous earthquake in its history since the 1842 Cap-Haïtien (north coast of Haiti) Earthquake. Occurred with a moment magnitude (Mw) of 7.0, the 2010 Haiti earthquake devastated Port-au-Prince, Léogâne, and Jacmel. Despite some progress in rebuilding infrastructure, the high cost of living due, in particular, to political instability and unemployment forces people to rebuild in worse condition than before the 2010 earthquake. Based on an independent investigation and experience of the country's reality in the domain of construction, this paper highlights the main causes of the 2010 Haiti earthquake to alert the need for better rebuilding the country. Therefore, some suggestions are given to boost the construction practice in Haiti to circumvent the loss of life and property in future catastrophic events notably earthquakes.


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