25 August 2021
Fifteen people are confirmed to have died in landslides in Venezuela’s western Mérida state.
Streets in mountain villages were converted into raging torrents after torrential rains hit the area in the Andes.
Footage taken by locals showed cars being swept away and boulders strewn over muddy roads.
Most of fatalities occurred in the town of Tovar, where the Mocotíes river bust its banks after hours of rainfall.
In another video, a resident can be heard describing how suddenly “a river came out of nowhere” sweeping away a local bakery
Officials said that the electricity plant in Tovar had been destroyed and that residents had neither power nor telephone connections.
It is not the first time the Mocotíes valley has been hit by deadly mudslides. In 2005, more than 40 people died and dozens went missing in the area when several rivers overflowed.