Thursday, January 13, 2011
According to Reuters, at least 443 are dead after massive flooding and mudslides in Brazil, after heavy rain in the rocky in the Serrana region. msnbc.com has reported that the death toll stands at almost 500. The area, located north of Rio de Janeiro, received 10 inches of rain (a month’s worth) in 24 hours.
The Folha de São Paulo publication stated it was the worst natural disaster to impact Brazil in about forty years. During a 5 mile hike for supplies, local resident Vania Ramos said, “I don’t even have the words to describe what I’ve seen.” According to the Civil Defense agency, in excess of 13,500 people have become homeless due to the recent events.
Debris from destroyed houses is littered across the area; more rain and mudslides are expected. Brazilian president Dilma Rousseff flew over the area by helicopter. To the region, the country's health ministry is sending seven thousand kilograms of medication. Teresopolis area mayor Jorge Mario said, “It’s like an earthquake struck some areas.”
Few rescue workers have been able to assist the people in the affected area, as transportation to the area is difficult. States neighboring the area have also been impacted by heavy rain and mudslides; mudslides kill hundreds of Brazilians every year.
== Sources ==
msnbc.com staff and news service reports. "‘We were like zombies,' Brazil mudslide survivor says" — MSNBC, January 13, 2011
Sergio Queiroz. "Brazil flood death toll rises to 443, more feared" — Reuters, January 13, 2011
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