- ARC providing relief services in wake of 6.4 magnitude earthquake; 200 feared dead -
Minneapolis, MN - A team of relief workers from the American Refugee Committee was one of the first teams on the ground to reach survivors of a 6.4 magnitude earthquake which struck Southwest Pakistan today. The ARC emergency response team, consisting of medics, paramedics, and logistics staff, is administering trauma and first aid response in Ziarat, the worst-affected district.
"People are in the streets and are fearing the worst," said Monte Achenbach, ARC's Vice President for International Programs. "The temperatures are below freezing, and people are spending the night outside, sleeping in the clothes they were wearing when the quake hit. There is an urgent need for help"
Reports indicate that about 200 people are dead, and thousands more rendered homeless. Buildings and other infrastructure have sustained considerable damage. Additional quakes and aftershocks are affecting the region, and a 6.2 shock jolted Quetta, one of the largest cities in the region. Mudslides have buried many houses.
In addition to health services, ARC is planning further interventions in emergency referral, shelter and blankets.
The American Refugee Committee has provided relief services in Pakistan since 2002, when it opened health posts which today serve 84,000 Afghani refugees in Balochistan province. In the wake of the October 2005 earthquake, which rocked Pakistan's Kashmir district, ARC began providing health care, supplies, shelter, and food aid in that part of the country. Today, ARC is still helping 250,000 Kashmiri quake survivors with health care and community mobilization services.
ABOUT THE AMERICAN REFUGEE COMMITTEE: The American Refugee Committee is a humanitarian aid agency that works to help people take back control of their lives. The partnerships we form with our constituents provide essential services and economic opportunities to people who have lost everything due to conflict and disaster. Each year, ARC works with nearly 2.5 million people in Africa and Asia.
Press contact: Therese Gales at (800) 875-7060.