Dams broken – 20,000 Brazilians left homeless after flooding

Bahia (Brazil) – Weeks of severe storms caused a catastrophic flood in the state of Bahia in northeastern Brazil.

Under the weight of the rain, two dams broke at the weekend. According to regional authorities, around 60 places have been under water since Sunday. 20,000 people are homeless.

A resident moves through the flood on an air mattressPhoto: STRINGER / REUTERS

First the Igua dam near the city of Vitoria da Conquista broke on Saturday night, the second on Sunday morning in Jussiape. Since then, rescue workers have been trying desperately to evacuate tens of thousands from the flooded areas using helicopters and boats.

Bahias Governor Rui Costa on Twitter: “I can not remember any major tragedy in the recent history of the country.” Saving lives is now a top priority, said Costa.

According to media reports, the state has been suffering from heavy rains since November. At least 18 people have been killed so far.


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