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State of emergency declared in Madre de Dios as severe flooding leaves 15 000 people affected, Peru


Heavy rainfall since mid-February has triggered widespread, severe flooding in Madre de Dios, Peru, leaving at least 15 000 people affected and thousands of property damage. This has prompted the government to declare a state of emergency for the region for 60 days.

According to environment minister Gabriel Quijandria, floodwaters damaged about 4 000 homes, several schools and health facilities, and around 3 000 ha (7 400 acres) of crops.

The affected areas include Pueblo Viejo, Las Piedras, Laberinto, and Boca Colorado.

"We have flown over the areas near and far from Puerto Maldonado and the truth is that the situation is worrying," said the minister. "There is significant damage in several towns, such as Laberinto."

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Peru’s National Civil Defense Institute (INDECI), along with the armed forces, are working together to distribute relief supplies, including personal hygiene, cleaning products, mattresses, sheets, kitchen utensils, and mosquito nets.

Puerto Maldonado registered 150.8 mm (5.9 inches) of rain in a 24-hour period to February 19. The Madre de Dios River was also at a red alert level, according to the National Meteorology and Hydrology Service SENAMHI.

In the Las Piedras district, Tambopata Province, the overflowing of the Madre de Dios river damaged 50 homes and prompted 37 families to evacuate.

Featured image credit: Peru National Police


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