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The Rio Madeira hits levels that haven't been reported in nearly 70 years

Flooding in northern Brazil halts Carnival

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Rodrigo Cokting
Staff writer

Saturday, March 1, 2014, 10:37 AM -

Flooding in Porto Velho, Brazil may have cancelled some important festive plans.

After days of incessant rain triggered flooding all along the Madeira River, city officials have ordered the suspension of Carnival between Saturday March 1 and Tuesday March 4. Brazilian Carnival is an annual festival held thoughout the country on the Friday before Ash Wednesday. The celebrations often continue straight up until Tuesday but in Porto Velho the festivities will have to be rescheduled to a later date.

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The local fire department said that more than 2000 families were affected by the flooding, which is said to be the worst to hit the region in 70 years.

Residents have blamed the situation on nearby Hydroelectric projects which affect the water level.

About 7000 students had a day off for safety reasons, which also allowed officials to turn the schools into shelters.

The nearby state of Acre also struggled with the rain but only canceled Carnival events that took place in the local stadium but continued all the street parades. The Acre river has hit an altitude of nearly 19 meters.

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