February 4, 2002

10 killed in mudslides caused by heavy rains in Brazil

                 RIO DE JANEIRO, Brazil (AP) -- Fifteen hours of heavy rain triggered
                 mudslides and caused two rivers to breach their banks in a midwestern city.
                 At least 10 people were killed and six others missing and feared dead,
                 authorities said Monday.

                 The rains swelled the Santo Antonio and the Todos os Santos rivers, which run
                 through the city of Teofilo Otoni, destroying a bridge and causing heavy flooding in
                 six neighborhoods in the city 370 miles (600 kilometers) northeast of Rio de
                 Janeiro, Minas Gerais state civil defense said in a statement.

                 Mudslides knocked down 70 houses and 80 more were completely submerged by
                 the rising water.

                 Ten bodies had been recovered and authorities were looking for six more believed
                 to by buried beneath the mud.

                 Authorities estimated some 400 people had been made homeless and another 1,600
                 had to flea their homes.

                 The city's mayor Getulio Neiva declared a state of public calamity and closed banks
                 and schools. State authorities were sending civil defense workers to help local

                  Copyright 2002 The Associated Press.