As authorities feared blood shortage after quake, Moroccans respond to donation call amid national distress

As authorities feared blood shortage after quake, Moroccans respond to donation call amid national distress

The Regional Blood Center in Marrakesh issued an urgent appeal for blood donations following a powerful earthquake that struck the Marrakesh-Safi region on Friday evening, leaving residents across several Moroccan cities in distress.

The Blood Center called upon all citizens to come forward and donate blood starting early Saturday, as medical facilities in Marrakesh reported a surge in patients seeking treatment, particularly at the Mohammed VI Hospital, to tend to the injured.

Dr. Najia El Amraoui, Director of the Rabat Blood Transfusion Center told MoroccoLatestNews that “the grand Marrakech region, the most hit by the earthquake, has received significant amounts of blood from different transfusion centers around the country since the quake first hit last night.”

“The Marrakech transfusion center reported that it has been able to meet demands, as it already had a sufficient stock,” El Amraoui.

The Director highlighted the necessity of the proper management of blood supply, asking citizens to “manage donations on the long term and throughout the month, to not waste supply.”

El Amraoui commended citizens’ initiative, as many flocked donation centers this morning in response to health authorities’ call.

The National Institute of Geophysics, affiliated with the National Center for Scientific and Technical Research, confirmed that a powerful earthquake measuring 7 on the Richter scale occurred on Friday evening in the El Haouz region.

According to the latest update from the Ministry of Interior, the death toll has climbed to 800, with over 400 reported injuries, half of which are in critical condition, across the regions and prefectures of El Haouz, Marrakesh, Ouarzazate, Azilal, Chichaoua, and Taroudant.

The ministry’s data indicated that El Haouz province suffered the highest number of casualties with 290 deaths, followed by Taroudant with 190 deaths, Chichaoua with 89 deaths, Ouarzazate with 30 deaths, Marrakesh with 13 deaths, Azilal with 11 deaths, Agadir with 5 deaths, Greater Casablanca with 3 deaths, and one fatality in the Youssoufia province.

The epicenter of the quake was identified in  El Haouz province at a depth of approximately 8 kilometers.

In response to the disaster, the Royal Armed Forces quickly mobilized to aid the affected areas, including El Haouz, Chichaoua, and Taroudant. 

Eyewitnesses reported the presence of a substantial number of Royal Armed Forces vehicles along the Casablanca-Marrakesh expressway on Saturday morning, according to MoroccoLatestNews AR. 

The Royal Armed Forces brought heavy machinery, including bulldozers, to assist in search and rescue efforts, particularly in locating victims buried under rubble. 

A fleet of ambulance vehicles from the Ministry of Health and Social Protection was dispatched to provide medical aid.

Gendarmerie Royale officers established checkpoints along the expressway to maintain order and security, while Civil Protection personnel were also seen on the scene.

Moroccan authorities, at all levels of government, are taking extensive measures to rescue citizens affected by the earthquake and ensure their safety. 

The country is now focused on rescue operations, medical aid, and providing support to the affected communities as Morocco unites to overcome this tragic disaster.


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