Torrential rains drenching north eastern Brazil since Tuesday have left at least 44 dead and another 56 missing, the government said Sunday in an updated toll.
“We registered 44 dead, 56 missing, 25 injured, 3 957 without shelter and 533 displaced,” Minister of Regional Development Daniel Ferreira told a press conference in Recife, the capital of north eastern Pernambuco state.
The number of dead had mounted from 34 since Saturday, with at least 28 killed in landslides, as heavy rains caused rivers to overflow and torrents of mud swept away everything in their path.
During a lull in the rain, some 1 200 personnel from various agencies resumed search and rescue work, the state government said.
The National Institute of Meteorology (Inmet) maintained its “red alert” through Sunday in Pernambuco, its highest level of warning for flooding and landslides.
“Although it has stopped raining now, we are forecasting heavy rains for the next few days, so the first thing is to maintain self-protection measures,” said the minister.
Over the past year, hundreds of Brazilians have died in flooding and landslides brought on by torrential downpours.
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