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FEA TURE

Damage done to Port-au-Prince, as this aerial photo taken from the AeroAmbulancia helicopter showed, was immense. “The stench from the decay and devastation of the city was just overpowering,” said Hardin. “We had to close the aircraft windows.”

Hardin (left) helps unload some of the 1,600 pounds of rice, beans and pasta delivered to the refugee camp by the Helidosa Aviation Group. “You would have thought it was Christmas morning,” said Hardin. “Everyone wanted to line up and be a part of unloading the food that would allow (the camp) to stay in operation just a little while longer.”

going to be a real challenge to rebuild an infrastructure that was already pretty frag- ile even before the earthquake.”

HEMS: Front And Center

Even for experienced HEMS profes-

sionals, the logistical challenges after Jan- uary 12 were immense. At one point, Hardin witnessed more than 50 airplanes and 25 helicopters on a single runway air- port, all with the same laudable goal of providing assistance to some of the ap- proximately three million people affected by the quake. With organizations and countries across the world sending hu- manitarian aid, including launching air- planes and helicopters for the recovery

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