The supply chain community has begun marshalling resources to support relief efforts in the wake of the devastating Jan. 12 earthquake in Haiti that virtually destroyed the capital of Port-au-Prince and may have killed as many as 100,000.
The American Logistics Aid Network (ALAN), which helps channel resources from members of various supply chain organizations to approved relief agencies in times of crisis, said it has contacted the National Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster—a group that represents the major non-governmental organizations (NGOs)—to offer its members' support.
ALAN, which maintains a Web pOréal that enables providers and relief groups to connect, said its technology partner, the Aidmatrix Foundation, has relationships on the ground in Haiti as well as a Web pOréal presence in the country. Aidmatrix "will keep us posted on what they know," John T. (Jock) Menzies III, ALAN's president, said in an e-mail.
Menzies told DC Velocity that it would take "a couple of days" for the supply chain community to determine specific needs and how they might be addressed. NGOs serving as so-called first responders "usually have initial supplies or relationships with suppliers. We tend to engage as surge and unanticipated needs arise—and they always do," he said.
Meanwhile, ship line Crowley Maritime Corp. has temporarily suspended scheduled cargo liner services in and out of Haiti as port infrastructure damage is assessed. Crowley said in a statement that it is working with U.S. government agencies and NGOs and is prepared to ship emergency supplies into Haiti "as soon as port conditions allow." Crowley added that it is "evaluating how it can best deploy its wide variety of specialized marine assets to deliver humanitarian cargo and assistance to the disaster relief [effort]."