Emergency Message for U.S. Citizens: Safety Precautions in Heavy Rain

Flooding in Port-au-Prince and throughout Haiti is a matter of life/safety. About half of all flood-related deaths are caused by drivers proceeding in unsafe flood conditions. Fast rising water across a street can cause a driver to lose control of the vehicle in as little as 6 inches of water. If you see water on the road from flooding you should turn around. When in doubt, turn around. When not in doubt, turn around. Vehicles can become buoyant in as little as 18 inches of water. Also, hidden dangers of dips in roads, washed out sections of roads previously in good condition and now covered in water, and fast moving water are serious dangers to driving in flood waters.

Remember–turn around … don’t drown. In the event of heavy rains, it is advised to hold fast at the current location until the rain has stopped and flooding has abated. Note that water may continue to rise for some time after rains have diminished or stopped. If you are away from home and in a safe place, stay there. If you are in a vehicle and on high ground, find a safe area to stop and remain in the vehicle.

For further information about security in Haiti:

  • • See the State Department’s travel website for the Worldwide Caution, Travel Warnings, Travel Alerts, and Haiti Specific Information.
  • • Enroll in the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) to receive security messages and make it easier to locate you in an emergency.
  • • Contact the U.S. Embassy in Haiti, located at Tabarre 41, Boulevard du 15 Octobre, Tabarre, Haiti; telephone 509-2229-8000; after-hours emergency telephone 509-2229-8122; ACS unit fax 509-2229-8027; e-mail ; website.
  • • Call 1-888-407-4747 toll-free in the United States and Canada or 1-202-501-4444 from other countries from 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. Eastern Standard Time, Monday through Friday (except U.S. federal holidays).