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Deadly landslide buries highway, vehicles in Brazil

A deadly landslide engulfs Brazil's BR-376 highway in the southern state of Parana, burying six trailers and as many as 15 vehicles. Officials report two people are confirmed dead and between 30 and 50 people are missing. Photo courtesy of Santa Catarina Fire Department
A deadly landslide engulfs Brazil's BR-376 highway in the southern state of Parana, burying six trailers and as many as 15 vehicles. Officials report two people are confirmed dead and between 30 and 50 people are missing. Photo courtesy of Santa Catarina Fire Department

Nov. 30 (UPI) -- A landslide in Brazil, following heavy rains, buried trucks and cars on a rural highway Wednesday killing at least two people and leaving dozens of others missing.

The landslide struck a 656-foot stretch of Brazil's BR-376 highway, in the southern state of Parana, burying six trailers and as many as 15 vehicles, CNNE reported.

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Aerial images show the large landslide and trees covering the highway, with vehicles swept over a ravine on the other side.

A fire department representative estimates there could be between 30 and 50 people missing.

Brazil's military police, firefighters and rescue dogs were digging through the mud to find survivors, but added bad weather and the remote location were complicating the search.

Emergency services located six survivors, including the mayor of the coastal town of Guaratuba, Roberto Justus, who said he was "alive by the grace of God," according to AFP news agency.

"It was horrible," he said. "The mountain just fell on top of us. It swept away every last car."

Heavy rains and flooding throughout Brazil in recent weeks have forced more than 8,600 people to evacuate their homes, with more rain forecast through Monday.

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The coasts of three southern states -- Parana, Santa Catarina and Rio Grande do Sul -- remain classified as "red alert" with a serious risk of landslides.

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