Joint Task Force Haiti has conducted some 364 full-spectrum missions, as of yesterday, using DOD and U.S. Coast Guard assets, which have assisted in saving about 436 lives and delivering vital aid, according to the Joint Staff deputy director for regional operations.
Army Maj. Gen. William D. "Hank" Taylor updated the media at a briefing at the Pentagon on the Defense Department’s humanitarian relief efforts in Haiti.
DOD and the U.S. Southern Command, in particular, are continuing to support the U.S. Agency for International Development's efforts to provide humanitarian assistance in Haiti, he said. USAID is the lead government agency.
The department has unique capabilities that are suited to humanitarian operations, including airlift and a range of logistical and medical assets, Taylor said.
Taylor mentioned that allies and partners have also been involved in the humanitarian assistance efforts in Haiti, working together with the U.S. to identify and respond to points of need in the nation.
The humanitarian assistance operation comes in the wake of two natural disasters that have hit the Caribbean island.
First, on Aug. 14, a magnitude 7.2 earthquake struck the southwest portion of Haiti, causing widespread damage, killing over 2,000, and injuring many times that number.
Haiti also took a direct hit from Tropical Storm Grace on Aug. 16, causing flooding and issues for people displaced from their homes and other structures that had been damaged by the earthquake.