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    More Rain in Flood-Ravaged Brazil Hinders Rescue Efforts

    By By Eric Leister, Meteorologist
    January 18, 2011, 2:26:09 AM EST

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    As rescue efforts continue across flood-stricken portions of Brazil, the death toll continues to rise.

    The most recent numbers indicate that more than 600 people have died and many more remain missing. Homes have been destroyed, leaving thousands of families homeless.

    To make matters worse, new rainfall is hindering rescue efforts, while also increasing the risk for further flooding and mudslides.

    The rain has already hampered rescue efforts to the point that they were called off for a time on Thursday for safety purposes.


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    Another concern is the thousands of people that continue to live in mountain towns across the region where future mudslides may occur.

    Government officials have warned people to evacuate the mountainous areas; however, many are choosing to stay in their homes and may be putting themselves at high risk by doing so.

    More bad news is that the rainfall is expected to continue across the region through much of the next week. In the town of Teresopolis, reports indicate that more than 10 inches of rain has fallen in the past 10 days. The monthly average rainfall for January is between 11 and 12 inches.

    The governor of the state of Rio de Janeiro declared seven days of mourning for the victims of the recent disasters. This flooding is now the 4th mostly deadly flooding event of the past 12 months across the entire globe, according to the Centre of Research on the Epidemiology of Disasters.

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