December 7, 2022

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Weavers | Venezuela | The rain ended in tragedy in Aragua, a disaster zone in the country Ducks Valley | Landslide | Nicolás Maduro | the world

Some citizens In the central region Remember the cry of sadness this Sunday, others could not describe the Saturday night, this small town was devastated by the overflowing valley, which took more than a hundred people, of which at least, 25 died and more than 50 are still missing.

The rain came with the sunset, and thus, under the protection of their own houses, the local residents became easy prey to nature, which, with the force of the water, blurred the surroundings and dozens of houses were boarded or buried, while vehicles and trees. They moved like puppets in the dark night.

Split seconds

After five in the afternoon, when it was raining outside, Carlos Castillo wanted to lie down for a little rest. The next thing he remembers is a neighbor calling for help, a cry mixed with others, rousing him from bed at full speed.

See: Hurricane Julia Live | Where is the hurricane in real time after making landfall in Nicaragua?

The 59-year-old driver climbed onto the third-floor roof of his home with two young granddaughters. A dozen people jumped from nearby houses to avoid rising water levels.

People walk among the rubble after the overflowing of the Los Patos stream in Las Tejerias, Aragua state, Venezuela. (EFE/ Rayner Peña R).

“In a fraction of a second,” he tells EFE, everything turned into a disaster.

See: Hurricane Julia Live: Northern Columbia suffers worst damage since hurricane’s passage

“Suddenly, I feel a noise. I see two or three houses coming and carrying the current, I hear screams, I hear everything (…) I see cars swimming”, He remembered the man whose tears could not continue the story. He takes a breath and returns to his house, where he tries to clear away the debris that completely covered the ground floor.

People collaborate to remove damage after the overflowing of the Los Patos stream in Las Tejerías, Aragua state.  Venezuela.  (EFE/ Rayner Peña R).
People collaborate to remove damage after the overflowing of the Los Patos stream in Las Tejerías, Aragua state. Venezuela. (EFE/ Rayner Peña R).

All your neighbors are in the same positionAt least 18 people have died in recent weeks in other parts of Venezuela, pulling carts full of silt or trying to drain their homes while repeating prayers to keep the rain from returning.

Carlos lost his truck and all his belongings, but no family member. At one point, water came up to his neck, but today he feels grateful.

Powered by current

Jose Cecilio Segovia did not suffer the same fate. He was swept away by the current and is now one of 52 people officially reported missing, even though the 56-year-old’s relatives know he boarded and may have died under the wreckage.

“The current carried him away, and many saw him carried away. It’s the same alley where he lived, but it’s boarded up. They are searching there, they were removed today (rubbish and corpses), but there are still people trapped “, Ana, the sister of the missing, who lives in the area near the tragedy, says.

Rescuers are involved in rescue operations after the Los Patos stream overflowed in Las Tejerias, Aragua state, Venezuela.  (EFE/ Rayner Peña R).
Rescuers are involved in rescue operations after the Los Patos stream overflowed in Las Tejerias, Aragua state, Venezuela. (EFE/ Rayner Peña R).

The 42-year-old woman found out what was happening from relatives living in Caracas as the storm disrupted communications and electricity in the city, 70 kilometers from the capital. .

When the night had already closed in and the rain had given up little by little, Anna goes looking for her brother and finds a sunken house And news of a double loss: His brother’s granddaughter, a girl aged one year and nine months, died in a dramatic scene where the relatives tried to hold each other.

Disaster zone

Many of the streets in Las Tejarias are now potholed, where rubble abounds and the roofs of clapboard houses look like sidewalks. Water continues to flow where people have traveled and versions are proliferating of whole groups of missing people who were at church or at parties.

Houses were damaged by rain and the overflowing Los Patos Stream in Las Tejerias, Aragua State, Venezuela.  (EFE/ Rayner Peña R.).
Houses were damaged by rain and the overflowing Los Patos Stream in Las Tejerias, Aragua State, Venezuela. (EFE/ Rayner Peña R.).

The city is overrun by a thousand army, police, rescue officers, medical teams and heavy machinery, which are trying to clear the huge debris.

At the same time, finding people becomes the main task. As dozens of relatives wait to find survivors, several rescue teams are dedicated to recovering bodies, which will take time.

The government has declared the city a “disaster and natural calamity zone”, an announcement that comes with three days of mourning. It will take a long time for those who lived Saturday night in Las Tejerias to get their lives back on track.

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