Colombia, Apr 2: Water from three overflowing rivers along with mud and debris resulted in a landslide in Putumayo, the south-western border province of Columbia. According to Columbian President Juan Manuel Santos, the landslide has led to the killing of 154 people in Putumayo further adding that the death toll could rise.
The overflowing of water is been reported to begin after heavy rains which led to pushing sediment into the buildings and roads in the provincial capital of Mocoa. The muddy water and debris surged quickly through the city’s streets and led to the ripping of trees from their roots, lifting cars and trucks and toppling homes and carrying them downstream.
According to reports, the number of dead bodies may rise and The Red Cross has said that around 220 people are missing and 400 were injured in the landslide. Addressing the citizens through radio station Caracol, Police Commander Colonel Omar Bonilla stated that, ” At this time we have removed 93 bodies. We have adults, women and infants.”
A statement released by Carlos Ivan Marquez, the head of Unit reads, ” We have sent a team of 150 people to make our response effective and machinery began work immediately… We will be with the governor and the mayor giving all necessary attention.”
(Pic courtesy: Colombian Presidential Press Office)
The air force has also released images on Twitter which shows the streets and houses filled and damaged by mud. Mocoa Mayor Jose Antonio Castro on Saturday said that the landslide has led to the destruction of two bridges. “A big portion of the many houses were just taken by the avalanche but above all the people were warned with enough time and they were able to get out but houses in 17 neighbourhoods have basically been erased,” he added.
A statement released by the Columbian government states that the Columbian President Santos is on his way to the area. Santos has also tweeted about the incident stating that he is praying for the victims of the landslide.