Terror In Teresopolis

Over 300 people so far have died

RIO DE JANEIRO — Driving rains sent tons of rusty red earth sliding into mountain towns, killing at least 335 people and leaving dozens more missing, Brazilian media reported Thursday.

Hillsides and river banks in the picturesque Serrana region north of Rio de Janeiro buckled under about 10 inches of rain — the equivalent of a month’s rainfall in 24 hours — destroying houses and killing many people early Wednesday, rescue officials said.

Television footage showed many houses buried in mud as desperate residents and rescue workers searched for survivors.

“There was no way of telling which house would fall. Rich and poor — everything was destroyed,” resident Fernanda Carvalho was quoted as saying by the Globo network’s website.

In the hardest-hit town of Teresopolis, hundreds of family members crowded at a morgue Wednesday night waiting to identify bodies. Officials there raised the death toll from 130 to 146, Globo reported.

I’ve been in Teresopolis many times. It’s a lovely town about an hour outside of Rio, high in the mountains, nestled in a steeply-sided valley that has a pleasing climate and houses of all types clinging to the hillsides.

Update: Some pictures.

4 Responses to “Terror In Teresopolis”

  1. What a tragedy. I pray that recovery goes swiftly, and for strength for the families.

  2. JeffS says:

    Dang, that’s ugly. My condolences to the entire city.

  3. tree hugging sister says:

    Aw, jeez louise.

  4. Kate P says:

    The missing people–that’s the extra awful part.

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