Monday, January 24, 2011

Brazil Flood Deaths Pass 800

The death toll from Brazil's devastating flooding has topped 800, with hundreds more missing, in the country's deadliest natural disaster on record.

Authorities said Sunday the number of bodies counted has reached 803 in the mountainous Serrana region north of the city of Rio de Janeiro.

Days of heavy rains in that area last week unleashed rivers of mud that leveled houses, threw cars on top of buildings, and left thousands of people homeless.

President Dilma Rousseff's government has allocated about $460 million in emergency aid for the affected areas, but survivors have criticized authorities for not providing enough help.

Landslides and floods are common in Brazil, often affecting poor communities where shacks are built on steep, unstable hillsides.


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