A cold front gripping much of South America is taking its toll on the homeless. In Paraguay’s capital city of Asuncion at least 12 people have died of hypothermia as temperatures dropped to minus 10 degrees Celsius.
Emergency services are working to get people off the streets and into temporary shelters. Police say hundreds have been moved in doors.
Gladys Cardozo, has been organising the emergency services’ response:“All the shelters are full. We are having to improvise so people don’t have to sleep in the streets. It’s been intensely cold at night and with the bad weather, people can get sick or even die.”
Meteorologists said the bitterly cold weather was affecting several countries including Brazil, Argentina and Peru.
Schools have been closed and electricity and gas networks are working to capacity, but it’s the sick and the poor who are the most vulnerable.