Haiti occupies the western third of Hispaniola, while the Dominican Republic covers the eastern two-thirds. Hispaniola is the second-largest and most populated island of the Antilles. It's located between Cuba to its west, and Puerto Rico to its east.
Hispaniola, famous as Columbus' first stop in the "New World" in 1492, has often been the target of Atlantic hurricanes. In 1979 Hurricane David claimed more than a thousand lives. On this mountainous island, landslides and flooding are usually the major causes of destruction. "Located right in the center of 'hurricane alley,' Hispaniola has a long and brutal history of hurricane destruction," notes climatologist Bill Patzert, Climatologist at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif. "Haiti, one of the poorest countries in the Western Hemisphere, suffers from severe environmental degradation which makes hurricane landfalls especially damaging and deadly," Patzert added.
…Lake Enriqullo, located in the southwestern corner of the Dominican Republic, increased in size from all of the rainfall from the 2008 tropical cyclones. Two satellite images captured by the Landsat satellite show the lake's increase in size. Landsat is a joint NASA / U.S. Geological Survey series of Earth-observing satellites that's been in operation since 1972. The image above was created by comparing a Landsat 7 image from August 2, 2007 with an image from August 20, 2008. The red area shows where the lake has expanded. The comparison reveals that the lake has increased in size, especially along its eastern- and westernmost edges, and the reduced surface area of Lake Enriqullo's central island indicates greater water volume.