Brazil storm death toll rises to 186, more than 110 missing
The death toll from last week’s mudslides and floods in the Brazilian city of Petropolis reached 186 authorities said Tuesday, one week after torrential rains lashed the tourist town.
Rio de Janeiro’s state civil defence said that more than 110 people still missing.
Since the storm, rescue workers have searched for victims, digging through the mud and wreckage left by devastating landslides that mainly hit poor hillside communities.
Residents described the agony of waiting for news on their missing friends and relatives.
Responding to the disaster, several Brazilian states sent reinforcements to help searching for missing people and cleaning up the debris alongside Rio’s fire department.
The number of people missing currently stands at 69, a figure that has been falling as victims' bodies are identified and as families separated in the initial chaos manage to reunite.
Police said 33 children were among those killed in the February 15 deluge, which dumped a month's worth of rain on the southeastern city in several hours.
More than 850 people who lost their homes or had to evacuate are still being housed in emergency shelters.