Developing

Floods hit drought-stricken parts of Brazil

Torrential rain has caused flooding across parts of eastern Brazil after an extremely wet few days. The massive downpours have been going on for some time now and have struck a part of the country that was recently in a state of drought.

Authorities say that 11 people are known to have died, with six still missing following the floods in northeastern Bahia state. The heavy rain began on Saturday evening and continued through much of Sunday.

The town of Lajedinho was particularly badly hit. Over 70 houses were destroyed and around 200 people had to seek shelter away from their homes.

Lajedinho recorded 120mm of rain in just a few hours. This is equivalent to two months rainfall.

Ironically, Brazil’s northeast is actually in the grips of its worst drought in a century. The rock-hard ground has not been able to absorb the sudden arrival of so much water in such a short space of time. This led to the widespread floods.

High rainfall totals were also recorded in the state of Minas Gerais. Aracuai had 69mm of rain in the 24 hours up to 1200GMT. Monte Azul saw 86mm in the same period.

Further thundery showers are expected over the coming days. This is the rainy season for many, but the heavy and steady rain does appear to have ended.