Massive floods hit Bolivia, at least 8 people dead

Massive floods hit Bolivia, at least 8 people dead

Heavy rains which started last week have caused massive flooding and mudslides in Bolivia over the past couple of days, killing at least 8 people by January 2, 2017. The worst affected are remote communities in the west of the country.

A state of emergency has been declared in the small Bolivian community of Caracoles on Saturday, December 31, 2016, after rains triggered heavy flooding which overflowed a dam and destroyed the dynamite storage area before rushing toward the miners' community. 85 houses were destroyed as a result and hundreds evacuated.

It is still not clear if the muddy water rushing down the streets is contaminated, Reuters reported. The Molinos and Villa El Carmen centers were most affected.

This is the second deadly flooding in Bolivia since early December 2016 when at least 4 people lost their lives.

They come in the wake of Bolivia's worst drought in 25 years, which led to the declaration of a state of emergency on November 21, 2016. 

Meteorologists warn floods and mudslides will remain a threat for some time to come.

Featured image: Flooding in Caracoles, Bolivia - December 2016. Credit: Reuters

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