Europe South Asia Asia Pacific Americas Middle East Africa BBC Homepage World Service Education
BBC Homepagelow graphics version | feedback | help
BBC News Online
 You are in: World: Americas
Front Page 
World 
Africa 
Americas 
Asia-Pacific 
Europe 
Middle East 
South Asia 
-----------
From Our Own Correspondent 
-----------
Letter From America 
UK 
UK Politics 
Business 
Sci/Tech 
Health 
Education 
Sport 
Entertainment 
Talking Point 
In Depth 
AudioVideo 


The BBC's Stephen Cviic reports
"There is no guarantee that the worst is over"
 real 28k

Wednesday, 5 January, 2000, 23:27 GMT
Brazil floods kill 26

Children play in the wreckage left by the floods


At least 26 people have died in heavy rain and flooding in south-eastern Brazil. Tens of thousands have been made homeless.

Floods and mudslides have swept away homes and bridges causing widespread destruction in some of the country's most populated areas.

Communications have been seriously affected, with many highways blocked.

The Brazilian President, Fernando Henrique Cardoso, who visited the flood-affected areas on Tuesday, has promised $2.7m for disaster relief.

Entire towns underwater

In the mountainous state of Minas Gerais, rivers have burst their banks, leaving entire towns virtually underwater. Civil defence officials report that 11 people have died in the state.



In neighbouring Rio de Janeiro state, 13 are reported to have died, mainly in landslides.

In both states, people have been forced to take refuge in schools and gymnasiums.

Power lines are down and medicine and drinking water are in short supply.

The main cities of Sao Paulo and Rio de Janeiro have suffered less, but transport links between them are chaotic.

The authorities have been forced to close roads, leading to huge traffic jams for people returning home after the Christmas and New Year holidays.

Mudslides on the Dutra highway, Brazil's busiest stretch of road, caused traffic to back up for nearly 10km. Motorists travelling in both directions have been forced to use the one open lane.

Unstable weather may continue

The BBC's Stephen Cviic in Sao Paulo says that the floods have been far less severe than those that left tens of thousands buried under mudslides in neighbouring Venezuela last month.

Many of the towns affected consisted of solid housing that may survive the floods, rather than wooden shacks.

However, there is no guarantee that the worst is over, even though the rains appear to be subsiding.

Weather forecasters say that the unstable conditions caused by the phenomenon known as La Nina are likely to continue for the next few months.

Search BBC News Online

Advanced search options
Launch console
BBC RADIO NEWS
BBC ONE TV NEWS
WORLD NEWS SUMMARY
PROGRAMMES GUIDE
Americas Contents

Country profiles

See also:
05 Jan 00 |  Americas
Brazil suffers flood chaos
22 Dec 99 |  Americas
Flood deaths blamed on past mistakes
01 Jan 00 |  Americas
Venezuela fears further floods

Internet links:

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites
Links to other Americas stories are at the foot of the page.


E-mail this story to a friend

Links to more Americas stories