REPORT: Torrential Rain Triggers Mudslides, Killing 58 People In One Of World’s Most Populous Countries

Screenshot/Youtube/ BBC News Brasil

Chris Bertman Contributor
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A series of mudslides and floods  triggered by torrential rain in the city of Petropolis, Brazil, have reportedly killed at least 58 people, local authorities said Wednesday according to The Associated Press.

Petropolis Mayor Rubens Bomtempo said that the number of dead could increase as rescue efforts continue, though twenty-one people have already been found alive, according to the AP. The state fire department reported that the city received 10 inches of rain in three hours Tuesday.

“There was a woman screaming, ‘Help! Get me out of here!’ But we couldn’t do anything; the water was gushing out, the mud was gushing out,” said Rosilene Virgilio, who was among the civilians aiding the recovery effort, according to the AP. “Our city unfortunately is finished.”

“The neighbors came down running and I gave them shelter,” bar owner Emerson Torre told the outlet. “Every neighbor has lost a loved one, has lost two, three, four members of the same family, kids.” (RELATED: Mudslide Pummels Resort Town In Japan, Leaves At Least 4 Dead And Dozens Missing)

Moderate rain is expected to continue through Wednesday, Petropolis’ civil defense authority announced according to the AP.

Rio de Janeiro Gov. Claudio Castro said the state would employ all of the government’s heavy machinery to uncover buried areas.

Petropolis is a mountainous region located northeast of Rio De Janeiro, Brazil, and is also known as the “Imperial City.” The city has experienced similar natural disasters that have resulted in hundreds of deaths, according to the AP.