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Brazil Floods: More Than 500 Dead

World  (tags: brazil, death, floods, humans, news, rains, Refugees&Relief, rescue, society )

- 2990 days ago -
More than 500 people are now known to have died in floods in south-eastern Brazil, the country's worst natural disaster for several decades. Heavy rain has led to massive mudslides hitting several towns, resulting in thousands being made homeless.


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Kit B (276)
Friday January 14, 2011, 6:29 am
More than 500 dead

A woman in Brazil narrowly avoids being swept away.

More than 500 people are now known to have died in floods in south-eastern Brazil, the country's worst natural disaster for several decades.

Heavy rain has led to massive mudslides hitting several towns, resulting in thousands being made homeless.

Police say the number of dead is likely to rise further.

The death toll has now surpassed the devastating 1967 mudslides in Caraguatatuba, Sao Paulo state, in which up to 430 people perished.

'Thousands trapped'

Rescue workers will resume searching for survivors in the mountainous Serrana region, north of Rio de Janeiro, later on Friday.

Many spent Thursday scrabbling with their bare hands through debris.

On her visit to the area, President Dilma Rousseff promised a shipment of seven tonnes of medicines.

In the Campo Grande area of Teresopolis, which was earlier cut off, rescuers found people pulling bodies from the mud.

In the neighbouring town of Petropolis, local resident Nelson Toledo told the BBC that some areas "had been completely devastated" by the floods and mudslides.

He said "thousands" of people remained trapped in their homes.

In the favelas of Rio de Janeiro, dwellers often argue that they have no choice but to live in high-risk areas built on hillsides.

But that's not at all the case in Teresopolis.

Many of the devastated houses were nice holiday properties kept by Rio residents, who come to the mountains to escape the oppressive heat of summer in the city.

The waterfalls, steep slopes and fantastic views from this mountain range are a magnet for visitors but also provide for a rather dangerous and unstable terrain.

The Brazilian military have brought in a field hospital and hundreds of people have taken refuge in the gymnasium in Teresopolis.

But the number of injured was threatening to overwhelm the medical services.

Jorge Mario, mayor of Teresopolis, said: "There are three or four neighbourhoods that were totally destroyed in rural areas. There are hardly any houses standing there and all the roads and bridges are destroyed."

In one dramatic rescue which was filmned, 53-year-old Ilair Pereira de Souza was pulled by rope from a destroyed house surrounded by raging water.

"I thought I was going to die," she said.

Ms Pereira de Souza had jumped with her dog Beethoven but was forced to let him go to survive.

"If I had tried to save him, I would have died. The poor thing. He stayed for a moment looking me in the eyes, and then he was swept away."

Posted by BBC Weather

Please go to |Visit Site| for the video and more photos

patricia lasek (317)
Friday January 14, 2011, 12:04 pm
This is so terrible. A sign of global warming?

Amber T (1)
Friday January 14, 2011, 12:16 pm
This is the same picture,from the Australian story.

Mike S (86)
Friday January 14, 2011, 12:51 pm
Noted and thanks for posting Kit.

Jacob Davis (44)
Friday January 14, 2011, 12:52 pm
OF COURSE this is global warming! =(

...this will be the mid-west in a couple of years... =(

Moira P (0)
Friday January 14, 2011, 1:31 pm
Thanks for the data. I hope they get lots of rescue help and relief.

Kit B (276)
Friday January 14, 2011, 1:36 pm
Floods, landslides, droughts, 49 states with snow, others with off season warmth, yes this is the result of climate change. Expect more news like this.

Friday January 14, 2011, 1:56 pm
terribly sad

Past Member (0)
Friday January 14, 2011, 2:03 pm
This is man't handy work and it will only get worse and more worse as the years we have left and that is a fact.


Mary Donnelly (47)
Friday January 14, 2011, 2:34 pm
Thanks Kit.

Amber T. You're right.

I really feel for the people of Brazil, and their new President. Some of us might have thought that Obama came to the presidency of the USA at a difficult time; as bad as it might have been for him, it is probably worse for her. Brazil has nowhere near the infrastructure needed to alleviate this kind of distress.

Gillian M (218)
Friday January 14, 2011, 2:59 pm
I don't know about this mountainside but many mudslides are caused by cutting down trees and bushes. Brazil has been cutting down forests so perhaps this is the reason.

I'm sorry for the loss of life both human and animal.

Edgar Zuim (47)
Friday January 14, 2011, 3:12 pm
All this is nature's answer for all the damage we have caused. This is just a warning. So simple, just respect nature for everything wonderful that it gives us.

Ann Breeden (65)
Friday January 14, 2011, 3:16 pm
Truly sad. I think Mother Nature is trying to tell us something and we really need to listen.

Kelsey S (0)
Friday January 14, 2011, 3:28 pm

Sonny Honrado (5)
Friday January 14, 2011, 3:49 pm
Flood is everywhere and so are mud slides. We seem so helpless against mother nature.

Bev W. (0)
Friday January 14, 2011, 4:19 pm
That video of the woman being rescued was so intense and so fortunate for her. The story of the dog looking her in the eyes tore me up.

Robert O (12)
Friday January 14, 2011, 4:27 pm
So terrible. I'm keeping them in my thougths and praywers. Thanks Kit.

Sheryl G (359)
Friday January 14, 2011, 4:50 pm
Australia is also with floods. Floods take more lives than any other natural disaster.

resignd Cannot remove (139)
Friday January 14, 2011, 5:03 pm
Oh my gosh, so horribly tragic and brave, to walk in that water which was moving so fast and it was so high. The poor little doggie, had to be let go, and I hope he made it to some tree or place. Don't know if I could do that with my little guys. That person was so brave. They all lose so much, most of their belongings are forever ruined and they lose family and beloved pets, and their livestock. Is anyone keep track to the frequencies and severity of these natural calamities compared to previous years. Seems so much worse and more frequent.

Susan S (187)
Friday January 14, 2011, 5:41 pm
My heart goes out to the poor people of Brazil who are suffering these floods. They are in my prayers.

Aletta Kraan (146)
Friday January 14, 2011, 6:42 pm
Noted with sadness !

Linda G (187)
Friday January 14, 2011, 9:44 pm
The devastation around the world is horrifying. It makes one feel so helpless that so much help is needed in so many places. I sit here dry and warm and feel almost guilty.

Ruth R (246)
Friday January 14, 2011, 10:14 pm
"Ms Rousseff said the state would care for the victims but said stopping future tragedies would be a priority." Some real prevention would sooth the soul.

Rose Becke (141)
Saturday January 15, 2011, 12:12 am
Very sad

Marıanna M. (0)
Saturday January 15, 2011, 6:47 am
so sad

Kit B (276)
Saturday January 15, 2011, 6:52 am
I wonder how a government or a leader can prevent natural disaster? We can all take some lessons from those countries that work to prevent the most horrific of damages, but prevent them?

Krasimira B (175)
Saturday January 15, 2011, 7:10 am
Terrible tragedy! The same in Australia...

Cheryl B (64)
Saturday January 15, 2011, 7:13 am
very sad

Sandra T (126)
Saturday January 15, 2011, 12:20 pm
Definitely, nature strikes back. We have done so much harm to this planet, greed and power always had first rank in all the decision making. The planet's health was always addressed last in line, sometimes never. Nature is designed and maintained in a very delicate balance, can even cope with so much damage and somehow selfrepair so much harm done. But these catastrophies worldwide are very obvious signs that this balance is now irrepairable, the harm done too great. This is all our own doing!!

Sandra T (126)
Saturday January 15, 2011, 12:22 pm
Thank you Kit for the article, noted

Julie-Anne T (13)
Saturday January 15, 2011, 6:09 pm
As an Australian my heart goes out to everyone, including the animals that are impacted by the floods in Brazil. Thanks Kit for sharing and have noted!

Joy W (100)
Saturday January 15, 2011, 11:54 pm
Sadly noted.

Olga Lustosa (194)
Sunday January 16, 2011, 1:03 pm
This was an announced tragedy. Sad enough to make us Brazilian think that we need to improve our knowledge in first aids because we can not wait for the government support. Helicopters got the place 5 days later.
Hope we can have better days soon.

Past Member (0)
Monday January 17, 2011, 1:39 pm
noted...this is a terrible tragedy....nothing can ever protect us from the power of nature when it comes for first any country....i would have to say that america has some of the best emergency responses in the wake of natural disasters...even though we can and do complain....think of the response on 911....voluntary's something that other countries may want to apply to their own emergency preparedness plans....and if they don't have such a is a great time to make one....

Victoria S (19)
Wednesday January 19, 2011, 8:34 am
Another Flood... people will say global warming is still not to blame??? I hadn't even heard about this desaster, they mentioned Australia on the news, but now this has been completely ignored
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