The death toll from torrential rains that have been falling since Tuesday in the region of Recife, capital of Pernambuco, in northeastern Brazil, has risen to at least 44 dead, the government announced on Sunday, adding that 56 people were missing.
“According to the updated information I have, we have registered 44 dead, 56 missing, 25 injured, 3,957 homeless and 533 displaced,” Regional Development Minister Daniel Ferreira told a news conference in Recife. .
The latest official report, established Saturday afternoon, reported 34 dead since Wednesday, as well as more than 1,300 displaced or homeless people, without estimating the number of missing. During a lull, some 1,200 men, with helicopters and boats, resumed the search for the missing and isolated people on Sunday morning.
The storm caused landslides on hillsides, overflowing rivers and large torrents of mud that swept away everything in their path.
Footage released by local authorities on Sunday shows rescuers and volunteers clearing debris in Jardim Monteverde, on the border between Recife and the municipality of Jaboatao dos Guararapes.
It was in this rugged region that the greatest tragedy occurred on Saturday morning, when a landslide killed 19 people. “Although it has stopped raining now, we are expecting heavy rain in the next few days.
The first thing to do is therefore to maintain self-protection measures,” said the minister, who flew over the disaster area in the company of other Brazilian officials.