Haiti Desperately Short on Tents
Recovery efforts begin, over objections of hopeful
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 25, 2010 9:00 AM CST
a young women gets her hair dressed, amid a makeshift tented refugee camp in Port-au-Prince, Haiti, Tuesday Jan. 19, 2010.   (Associated Press)

(Newser) – Haitian officials yesterday began the daunting task of finding shelter for the hundreds of thousands left homeless by the earthquake. International aid organizations identified three sites ideal for temporary shelters, but say they’re short on supplies. One organization estimates that they’ll need 100,000 tents to house some 500,000 people. “Tents, tents, tents,” a group spokesman tells the New York Times. “That’s the word we want to get out. We need tents.”

Meanwhile, demolition crews began razing buildings that were dangerously close to toppling over on their own. But many Haitians protested the new focus on recovery, urging continued search and rescue efforts. In one case, bulldozers stopped cleaning up the rubble of a school when a teacher reported getting a phone message from a colleague presumed dead and trapped within. The search leader sent dogs to check the ruins, but came up empty-handed. “How can we trust these kinds of decisions to a dog?" asked the distraught wife of a man thought to be within. “Dogs are not detectives, or magicians.”