The death toll from heavy rains and mudslides in the city of Petropolis in Brazil’s Rio de Janeiro state has risen to 104, authorities said late Wednesday.
At least 54 homes have been destroyed and 370 people are being housed in shelters, according to a report by the Brazilian news portal G1.
Speaking to reporters from the flood-hit area, Rio de Janeiro State Governor Claudio Castro said the region was exposed to its heaviest rainfall since 1932.
Castro said he expects social assistance to be provided to those hit by the floods until next week for buying furniture and household goods.
He earlier said that the situation resembled a "war zone” with cars hanging from poles and streets filled with mud and water.
More than 400 firefighters have carried out search and rescue efforts in the region and rescued 21 people, while 35 people have been reported missing so far, but authorities have not yet determined the total number of missing.
Authorities have declared a “state of disaster” in the region and called on people living in risky areas to head to places used as shelters.
Due to the disaster, many schools and universities in the region were turned into support points where the homeless were sheltered and aid was given to the needy.
Authorities said Tuesday that Petropolis saw enough precipitation in six hours for the entire month of February.
More than 900 people died in a flooding tragedy in the city in 2011 and more than 100 others went missing./aa