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. Brazil flood toll rises to 33 dead

by Staff Writers
Brasilia (AFP) April 9, 2008
At least 33 people have died in two weeks of flooding in northeast Brazil, and more than 77,000 people have been homeless, with officials warning Wednesday that the heavy rain would continue.

The state of Paraiba was the worst-hit, according to the national Civil Defense service. Twenty-six of the fatalities occurred there, and 76 towns are under water.

The region is usually parched for much of the year, and thus largely unprepared for sudden heavy rains.

Authorities say the weather was moving inland and have issued an alert for for the central states of Goias and the federal state containing the capital Brasilia.

Intense rains, lightning strikes and winds of up to 50 kilometers (30 miles) an hour were expected into Friday, Civil Defense officials said in a bulletin.

An emergency situation has been declared in the worst-affected states and the government was providing 280 million dollars in aid.

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Geologist Decries US Midwest Floodplain Development
St. Louis MO (SPX) Apr 04, 2008
Patterns in the Midwest this spring are eerily reminiscent of 1993 and 1994, back-to-back years of serious flooding. The great flood of 1993 caused nearly $20 billion of economic damage, damaging or destroying more than 50,000 homes and killing at least 38 people.

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