Number of dead from Ecuador landslide rises to 23
QUITO (Reuters) - Ecuador's government on Friday raised the number of dead from a landslide in the Andean city of Alausi to 23, while rescue teams continued to look for missing people.
The incident took place on Sunday night in a part of the city, which is located in the province of Chimborazo. The landslide has affected some 850 people and destroyed 57 buildings, according to official figures.
The number of dead is growing gradually as rescue groups gain access to houses that were covered by huge amounts of earth.
"Security protocols to stabilize the ground are being applied so that the teams can continue with the search and rescue work in the affected area, including the use of machinery," the country's risk agency said in its latest report on Friday.
At least 67 people remain missing, while 38 people were injured.
Ecuador's disaster agency had warned of potential landslide danger for a 247-hectare (610-acre) area in Alausi in February, which included part of the zone where Sunday's landslide hit.
Areas in other Andean provinces were also issued similar warnings by authorities on Friday due to risks of floods and landslides.
Heavy rains destroyed roads, bridges, and other infrastructure.
(Reporting by Alexandra Valencia; Writing by Oliver Griffin; Editing by Marguerita Choy)