Brazil – Deadly Floods and Landslides Strike in Rio De Janeiro State

At least 16 people have lost their lives after record rainfall of over 800 mm in 48 hours triggered flash floods and landslides in Baixada Fluminense and Costa Verde regions of Rio de Janeiro state, Brazil.

Landslide in Paraty, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, April 2022. Photo: Corpo de Bombeiros Militar do Estado do Rio de Janeiro

The tourist town of Paraty in the south western corner of the state was one of the worst affected areas. Local officials reported that a landslide in the Ponta Negra neighbourhood destroyed 7 houses, burying at least 8 residents from the same family. As of 02 April, 7 people had died in the incident with one person rescued alive.

Paraty’s Municipal Department of Social Assistance said it had helped 219 affected families in 22 neighbourhoods. Around 71 families had been displaced and move to temporary shelters, including in municipal schools. The municipality declared a State of Public Calamity on 02 April 2022.

Parts of neighbouring municipality of municipality of Angra dos Reis saw a record 809 mm of rain in 48 hours to 02 April 2022. Floods and landslides have caused severe damage and fatalities and the municipality also declared a State of Public Calamity on 02 April 2022.

As of 03 April, Brazil’s National Civil Defence reported 8 fatalities and 3 people missing in Angra dos Reis. Fire fighters have rescued 5 people. A total of 181 people have moved from their homes to temporary accommodation.

Local media also reported a weather-related fatality in Mesquita, 40km northwest of Rio de Janeiro city, where a man was electrocuted in flood waters whilst trying to help another person. Municipal authorities said the cause of death was still being investigated. Roads have been closed and homes damaged by floods landslides. Authorities have assisted dozens of affected families. Mesquita recorded 266 mm of rain in about six hours on 02 April, officials said.

Over 230 people lost their lives in two spates of floods and landslides in Petrópolis in the Fluminense Mountain Region of the state State in February and March this year.