April 8th, 2010
12:47 PM ET

Death toll climbs to 154 in Brazil flooding

The death toll from flooding and mudslides in Brazil continued to climb Thursday, with official reports of at least 154 fatalities.

Thousands of people have been left homeless, said the government-run Agencia Brasil news service. The Rio de Janeiro mayor's office placed that figure at 5,000.

A record 11.3 inches (287 millimeters) of rain fell in Rio within 24 hours Tuesday, Mayor Eduardo Paes said, according to the news service. The downpour continued Wednesday.

More than 30 homes were destroyed in a mudslide Wednesday in metropolitan Rio, Agencia Brasil said. About 200 people could be buried or trapped in the mud, emergency officials said.

The cities of Niteroi and Sao Goncalo are among the hardest hit, with more than 80 dead and dozens missing, the news service said.

CNN affiliate TV Record showed firefighters, military and other rescue officials using heavy machinery to dig for buried residents.

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Filed under: Brazil • Weather • World
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