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Brazil buries its dead after worst floods in decades

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Brazil buries its dead after worst floods in decades
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The bodies keep arriving as the death toll soars.

Brazil is struggling to bury all the victims of the country’s worst floods in decades.

Simple wooden crosses and numbers identify the dead at a hilltop cemetery in the devastated city of Teresopolis. Gravestones may be missing but the grief is real.

Floods and mudslides are now known to have claimed at least 540 lives and left more than 13,500 people in need of shelter and aid. The extent of the damage has exposed huge flaws in Brazil’s emergency planning and disaster prevention.

Rivers of mud tore through towns in the mountainous Serrana region outside Rio de Janeiro, levelling houses.

Intermittent rain is complicating efforts to find survivors. And blocked roads have made access difficult, hence huge signs on the ground, signalling to helicopters where bodies can be found.