The flight piloted by Luke Newell, left Mount Hagen in the early morning bound for Muluma and Bosavi.
On board was a cargo of rice and water for the communities around Bosavi airstrip, plus a carepack with soap, hygiene items and pots and plates to Muluma, home to around 4,000 people.
The need is increasing in areas like Muluma and Bosavi as surrounding communities leave their homes and seek assistance at the airstrip. people continue to arrive scared by the aftershocks that continue to rock their homes and gardens.
A large aftershock, 6.3. – 6.7 on Richter scale, occurred just after midnight on 7 March destroying a few houses and damaged others. So when pilot Luke Newell arrived with his cargo of relief items for distribution on the ground he was welcomed with open arms.
Luke reports: 'I saw that at least two people were bruised, a man talking to me had a scar on his right cheek. Tony I believe was his name. He said he wanted to run outside, but he could not run out as the floor was shaking heavily and the steps might have fallen off. He must have fallen onto a nail or something spiky that tore a wound in his right cheek. It looked quite deep, so I got the first aid packet out of the plane and gave him an antiseptic cream to at least keep the wound clean.'
'There were reports of other injuries, but we are yet to see these people coming to seek help. Many of the surrounding communities run to where the ground is flatter, and that is where the airstrip is located. They come from around a 30 minute walk for their own safety, but also they hope to receive some relief goods such as tarpaulins, water or rice. Luke sees their needs: 'I feel sorry for them, I just would like to help. I see not only the houses that have collapsed and the injuries many need assistance for, but also the gardens that are breaking up and their food for tomorrow becomes uncertain.'
'I feel sorry for them, I just would like to help.'