The whole of Brazil and even the rest of the world have witnesses the situation that the State of Rio de Janeiro faces due to the rains and the floods that have affected the main cities of the mountainous region....Thousands of newspapers in the country are permanently giving the list of the dead who have been found and it is well over eight hundred. There are hundreds of people who have disappeared and their families are living the indescribable anguish of searching bodies which nobody knows where they are or if they will ever be found.
Together with this, the sadness of those who lost everything that it took a lifetime to build and are left unsheltered: a house, personal objects, home appliances. Everything. The images of the destruction of the houses on the hillsides, the discouragement of the people in the shelters are the depiction of sadness itself.
Victims are buried without a wake and their graves are improvised in the cemeteries of the affected cities, which are insufficient for the number of bodies that must be buried. The macabre parade of people burying their relatives —one or more than one— continues to pass before our eyes aghast with the devastation that the waters of January left behind and still threaten to continued. The search for those who disappeared still continues, but the rain makes the work even harder and delays the work of civil defense personnel and firemen.
But what is most shocking is that when one thinks about this tragedy is that it has become sadly chronic. It comes round every year, like a film that we see over and over and over again. As far back as 1966 245 millimeters of rain poured over the city of Rio de Janeiro in only 24 hours and the landslides in the favelas caused the death of over 140 people. The then governor Negrão de Lima was severely questioned by the population and measures were expected to be taken in the hillsides, the rivers... but it never happened. After that there were others, many other tragedies like that one. But in the last years things seem to be getting worse.
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