Venezuela | Heavy rains and floods affect a thousand families

(Puerto Cruz) The heavy rains that have fallen since Wednesday in Venezuela have caused floods, landslides, cut roads and affected around a thousand families across the country but without causing fatal victims, according to the authorities. .

Posted at 7:28 p.m.

“It was a great scare,” said AFP Marian Ramirez, 20, in Los Duraznos, on the road to Puerto Cruz and Puerto Maya, coastal villages about a hundred kilometers northwest of Caracas and affected by the precipitations.

After hours of torrential rain that began early Wednesday morning, Marian left her home, with her husband and two children, when the earthen walls of the small wooden and earthen house began to crack.

“The house started to move, to crack […] and we got out of there because of the danger to our children,” she says. The family took refuge in the house of the husband’s parents in a neighboring district of this area at the foot of the mountain.

A few meters away, the road was blocked, by a slide of mud and rocks while a backhoe was at work.

“We had a huge downpour,” President Nicolas Maduro said on television on Wednesday. Caracas and eight of Venezuela’s 23 states were affected, he said.

The rainy season generally causes damage in Venezuela, especially in working-class areas with precarious dwellings or in the agricultural villages of the interior.

According to official reports, the recent rainfall caused damage to more than 120 homes in the Puerto Maya and Puerto Cruz area.

Both communities are virtually isolated due to debris blocking roads.

Videos released by Civil Protection show emergency personnel making their way on motorbikes through mud and fallen trees to bring in food, drinking water and clothing.

Late Wednesday afternoon, in the La Linea sector of the popular Petare district of Caracas, residents were bailing out the water that invaded their homes and businesses.

Jonathan Parra, 36, watched helplessly as his store flooded. “It’s too hard,” he told AFP, lamenting the losses suffered.

The state of Barinas (west), the native region of former President Hugo Chavez, was one of the most affected regions, with more than 500 families affected, the opposition governor told the press, Sergio Garrido.

The Minister of Interior and Justice, Admiral Remigio Ceballos, announced on Wednesday the activation of the National Emergency Center to take care of the affected populations.

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