"More Than 500 Dead in Brazil's Worst-Ever Disaster"

"TERESOPOLIS, Brazil -- Brazil is suffering its worst-ever natural disaster after mudslides near Rio de Janeiro killed more than 500 people, the latest toll showed Friday.

Municipal officials in the Serrana region just north of Rio said at least 506 people were killed, surpassing the 437 killed in a 1967 mudslide tragedy that had been previously considered Brazil's biggest disaster.

More bodies were expected to turn up as rescuers finally reached villages cut off because of destroyed roads and bridges in the region.

Frantic efforts to locate survivors and bodies braved the risk of further mudslides, as rain continued to fall on the waterlogged region, making it even more unstable."

Marcelo Lluberas reports for AFP January 14, 2011.

Source: AFP, 01/14/2011