Floods : More flee homes in sodden Paraguay

December 28, 2015 11:55 pm

 A man rows his boat through a flooded street in Concordia, Argentina. Photo / AP

With further rain looming, more families have abandoned their homes
in Paraguay, the country hardest hit by the worst flooding in decades in
the area bordering Uruguay and Argentina.
The have already forced more than 100,000 people to evacuate.
The
phenomenon El Nino has exacerbated summer rains, swelling
rivers in the region. The River Paraguay, which flows by the country’s
capital, Asuncion, has already reached 7.82m, its highest level since
1992.
Around 90,000 people have already left their homes in
Asuncion. In Alberdi, about 120km further south, authorities have called
for 7000 people to evacuate because of cracks detected in the town’s
levee.
“We are very uncertain about what could happen with the
[flood] wall and we do not want to run any type of risk, so the
population has been alerted,” said Paraguay’s Minister of National
Emergencies, Joaqun Roa. This year’s El Nino, which causes global
climate extremes, is the worst in more than 15 years, the United Nations
weather agency said last month.

While it has worsened floods in some parts of South America, in others such as Colombia it has brought drought.
The
Paraguayan Government has declared a state of emergency in Asuncion and
seven regions of the country to free up funds to help those affected.
Local
media reported two people were electrocuted in their flooded homes and
several were killed by trees falling in the storms that caused the
flooding.
In northern Argentina, across Paraguay’s southern
border, some 20,000 people have had to evacuate in what local
authorities have called the worst flooding in 50 years.
In Uruguay, 11,000 people have been evacuated.
In southern Brazil, flooding has forced 1800 families to leave their homes.


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