Brazil: Floods and landslides kill eight, 13 missing | Floods News

Two days of heavy rain caused flash floods and landslides across the Brazilian state of Rio de Janeiro.

Torrential rains caused flash floods and landslides across the Brazilian state of Rio de Janeiro, killing at least eight people including six children and leaving 13 missing, authorities said on Saturday.

Two days of heavy rain have lashed a swathe of the state’s southeast Atlantic coast, the latest in a series of deadly storms in Brazil that experts say are being exacerbated by climate change. climate.

The latest floods and landslides come six weeks after flash floods and landslides killed 233 people in the beautiful city Petropolisthe 19th century summer capital of the Brazilian empire, also in the state of Rio.

This time, the worst-affected areas include the tourist town of Paraty, a seaside colonial city known for its picturesque cobblestone streets and colorful houses.

Officials there Saturday said a landslide in the Ponta Negra neighborhood killed a mother and her five children, ages 2, 5, 8, 10 and 15.

They said a sixth child was rescued and taken to hospital.

In total, seven houses were swept away by landslides in the city, and four others were injured. Officials say 70 families have been forced out of their homes.

Congressman Marcelo Freixo, who represents the state of 17.5 million people, said two more victims had died in the cities of Mesquita and Angra dos Reis, where 13 others were still missing.

In Angra, a 4-year-old girl was buried in a landslide, while in Mesquita, 40 kilometers (25 miles) northwest of Rio de Janeiro, a 38-year-old man was electrocuted. when trying to help another person out of trouble. flooding, media reports said.

Storms turned streets into rivers in several cities on Friday night, washing away cars and triggering landslides – a tragedy that is frequent during the rainy season, especially in poor communities on the slopes. hill.

Officials in Angra said the city received 655 mm (26 inches) of rain in 48 hours, “a level never before registered in the city”.

The federal government said it had sent military aircraft to assist with local rescue efforts and sent national disaster response secretary Alexandre Lucas to the state.

Experts say Brazil’s monsoon downpours are increased by La Nina – the cyclical cooling of the Pacific Ocean – and by impacts of climate change.

As the hotter atmosphere contains more water, global warming increases the risk and intensity of flooding caused by extreme rainfall.

In January, torrential rain caused floods and landslides that killed at least 28 people in southeastern Brazil, mainly in the state of Sao Paulo.

There was also heavy rain in the northeastern state of Bahia, where 24 people died in December.

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