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Porto Velho flooding reaches record level in northern Brazil

Bnamericas Published: Thursday, March 27, 2014
Porto Velho flooding reaches record level in northern Brazil

Heavy rains in northern Brazil's Rondônia state continue to threaten state capital Porto Velho as flooding in the Madeira river area reaches record levels, according to a federal government release.

Last Friday, the river level rose to 19.4m, the release said citing data from the national water agency ANA.

The river level is expected to rise to 19.5m by the end of March, according to the state's civil defense department. The highest river level previously recorded at this location is 17.7m in 1997.

More than 3,100 families have been affected in the state, especially in the metropolitan region of Porto Velho. A total of 1,752 families have been displaced and 873 have been left homeless. Total losses, according to state and municipal governments, exceed 1bn reais (US$436mn).

Brazil's national integration ministry has allotted nearly 1mn reais in additional funding for the state, according to the release, citing federal gazette Diário Oficial da União. It has earmarked an additional 845,000 reais for the town of Japorã in Mato Grosso do Sul and 394,000 reais for the town of Cruzeiro do Oeste in Paraná.

The money will go toward flood damage reconstruction works.

Earlier this month the federal government released approximately 7mn reais for immediate relief to flood victims.

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