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Dozens injured, missing after river floods Colombian town

News agency

Wednesday, November 8, 2017, 7:11 PM - Families and rescuers searched desperately on Wednesday (November 8) through mud-plastered rubble for victims of flooding after a mudslide in Colombia killed nine, with 19 still missing, according to police reports.

River La Paila burst its banks near the southeastern municipality of Corinto in the Cauca department at 18:40 local time (23:40 GMT) on Tuesday (November 7), sending water, mud and debris crashing down streets and into houses.

Volunteers and firefighters tended to injured residents at the local fire station, before they were taken on board ambulances to near-by medical clinics.

Corinto Mayor, Edward Fernando Garcia, said six blocks of the municipality - home to 32,000 people - were devastated, adding 28 people had been injured. He said four people were still missing, before that number went up, following police reports.

Local media reported that at least 37 homes were destroyed in the neighbourhoods of La Colombiana, La Playa and Esmeralda and the towns of Carrizales, Pedregal and El Tablon, although due to the force of the mudslide, that number will likely increase.

Troops and police helped residents in the rescue operation and heavy machinery was being used to clear mud from the devastated area.

President Juan Manuel Santos urged Colombians to take precautions against flooding and continued rains. Residents have been evacuated for fear of further slides.

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