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News > Brazil

Brazil: Heavy Rainfall In Sao Paulo City Leaves 40 People Dead

  • Two girls walk through a flooded area, Brazil, Feb. 2023.

    Two girls walk through a flooded area, Brazil, Feb. 2023. | Photo: Twitter/ @diariogravata_

Published 21 February 2023

Lula da Silva checked the rescue works in Sao Sebastiao municipality, where over 600 mm of rain fell in 24 hours. 

On Monday, Brazil's President Lula da Silva checked rescue works in the coastal region of Sao Paulo city, where 40 people died due to heavy rainfall over the weekend.


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He contemplated the muddy rivers that cover the houses near the beaches of Sao Sebastiao municipality, located about 200 km from Sao Paulo city, where over 600 mm of rain fell in 24 hours. 

“It is important that we do not build houses in areas where landslides and flooding can occur after heavy rainfall,” said Lula, who canceled his days off in Bahia state to travel to Sao Paulo. 

According to the National Monitoring Center and Natural Disaster Alerts (Cemaden), 9.5 million Brazilians live in areas at risk from landslides or flooding, which are extremely frequent in this Latin American country.

The tweet reads, "Sao Paulo's north coast after yesterday's torrential, historic storm. State of calamity."

Authorities estimated that recent heavy rainfall forced about 1,717 people to leave their homes. Images published by local media showed rivers of mud and debris, ruined roads, sunken coastal roads, and cars destroyed by fallen trees.

"We were scared. The glass in the bathroom exploded with the water. The waterfall, with trees and stones, came in and down to our shoulders," Vanesa Caetano, a 41-year-old Brazilian living with a husband and two children, told the AFP agency.

Over 600 military and police officers participate in the rescue efforts. Sao Paulo governor Tarcisio de Freitas decreed a state of emergency in six municipalities to facilitate resource deployment.

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