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April 7, 2010 / Dave Gorham

Torrential Rains in Rio de Janeiro Cause Mudslides/Floods

A strong low pressure system and associated cold front brought torrential rains to the Rio de Janeiro area on Tuesday that caused floods and landslides. Over 100 people so far have been killed and the death toll keeps rising. Most victims died in more than 180 mudslides, authorities said. This slow moving frontal system caused heavy rains, which began late Monday and are said to be the worst the city of Rio has recorded in 30 years.

An aerial view of the Jardim Botanico neighborhood in Rio de Janeiro. Image: Reuters

The mayor of Rio de Janeiro, Eduardo Paes, stated that a record-breaking 11.3 inches of rain inundated the city within a 24-hour period. Most of the victims perished in the city’s hillsides where the homes of the dead got buried by tons of mud and rubble. The mayor also said 1,200 people had been made homeless and that 10,000 houses remained at risk, mostly in the slums where about a fifth of Rio’s people live.

Cars on a flooded street in Rio de Janeiro. Image: Reuters

For now, the threat of significant heavy rain has ended over Rio de Janeiro as the front has cleared the area. However, showers will be possible through at least Friday as the front moves slowly eastward up the coast and stalls today near Salvador. The showers look to be most numerous over the higher terrain south of Rio de Janeiro. Along the coast of Brazil, heavy showers and thunderstorms are expected to continue into Thursday along and ahead of this front. Daily rainfall amounts between 1-3 inches with isolated heavier amounts up to 4 inches will be possible. A few thunderstorms may briefly become severe through tomorrow with the main threat being damaging winds in excess of 50 mph.

Image: ImpactWeather Gmaps 2.0



Leave a Comment
  1. VinylculturE / Apr 7 2010 8:40 PM

    Vaya desastre

  2. Dave Gorham / Apr 14 2010 12:37 PM

    The death toll has now risen to 224 and new reports have the trolley to the top of Rio’s Christ the Redeemer closed because of damage to access roads. Workers estimate the trolley should be open in one or two months.

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