Citizens of Venezuela deal with the effects of floods all throughout the country


Flash floods in central Venezuela killed at least 22 people and left dozens of neighborhoods and businesses affected and several houses destroyed after torrential rains caused rivers of mud, rocks, and trees in the municipality of Santos Michelena, reported the authorities.
The residents of Las Tejerías de Santos Michelena, an agro-industrial municipality in Aragua state, some 87 kilometers southwest of Caracas, barely had a few seconds to get to safety on Saturday night.

During the past week, the passage of tropical wave 41 of the season off the Caribbean coast of Venezuela caused maximum rates of rainfall, flooding, and material damage in 11 of the 23 states of the country.

Venezuela’s Justice Minister, Remigio Ceballos, reported this Thursday that there are already 50 people killed by the landslide that occurred in the state of Aragua over the weekend. He added that the bodies have already been handed over to their relatives. In a statement Tuesday, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro hinted that hopes of safely rescuing the more than 50 people who remain missing are fading. “We are reaching almost 100 victims, fatalities, in this tragedy,” the president said. Nicolas Maduro also announced that emergency funds had been made available to the survivors, asking the local population for patience and indicating that it will take time to reach all the families affected by the tragedy.

Carlos Pérez, deputy minister for Risk Management and Civil Protection, assured on Monday that more than 1,000 officials from the National Risk Management System and police officers participated in the search and rescue plan in the Santos Michelena municipality, due to the overflow of the Quebrada Los Patos after days of continuous rain.

For her part, the governor of Aragua, Karina Carpio, communicated on Twitter that 21 sectors in Santos Michelena were affected by heavy rainfall. He added that there are destroyed houses and fallen trees. 15 companies reported damage and the electrical system was suspended.

Up the mountain, the avalanche swept away most of the houses, including those of families from a group of local evangelical pastors, who were praying at the time, said Carmen Teresa Chirinos, a housewife from Las Tejerías. “There are many missing people,” he lamented, as families hugged each other and cried in front of their homes and businesses. This has become a tragedy for many Venezuelan families, as residents search for their missing relatives in the rubble of their destroyed homes. A foundation called “I Love Venezuela” will collect donations to be delivered to the Caritas Foundation of Venezuela to help the families in Aragua-Venezuela.