Peru: Thousands Affected By Severe Flooding

A truck is seen at the Central highway after a landslide and flood in Chosica, east of Lima, Peru. REUTERS/Guadalupe Pardo

Intense rains in Peru have left thousands of people homeless and thousands more without water service in the capital. The rains have caused rivers to overflow in some areas and authorities are now saying the floods in the country are the worst in the last 20 years.

The intense rains have brought floods in the Peruvian capital of Lima, where hundreds of people have been left stranded. Rescue teams have been working in the affected areas to rescue those stranded and evacuate those who could be affected by the rains, which are expected to continue.

Two days ago, officials said the floods had left at least 67 people dead. But Prime Minister Fernando Zavala revealed today that the number had increased to 72 since the beginning of 2017.

The severe flooding and landslides in these areas have left thousands of people homeless and some officials are now calling for the country to cancel the Pan Am Games to rebuild the most affected areas. Peru is the host of the 2019 Pan American Games, which will take place in the capital Lima.

Lima, a city where rain is not very common, has seen heavy rain recently. The mudslides in the area have left hundreds of people trapped in buildings. Rescue teams have been sent in to help residents cross flooded roads with ropes. In one area, many were trapped after a river overflowed.

The Health Ministry has also sent in teams to fumigate around places where water is not leaving. Pools of water bring in mosquitoes that carry diseases like dengue. The heavy rains have led to officials calling a state of emergency in some parts of the country.

Last week, the floods forced schools to close in Lima. The capital is also without its main source of potable water after the Rimac River overflowed. The recent floods in surrounding areas have left the river full of debris and mud. A few days ago, the government said it had assigned $240 million for reconstruction in Northern Peru, where rain continues affecting thousands of people. Rains are expected to continue for another two weeks.