January 2011 Rio de Janeiro floods and mudslides

A series of floods and mudslides took place in January 2011 in several towns of the Mountainous Region (Região Serrana), in the Brazilian state of Rio de Janeiro. Casualties occurred in the cities of Nova Friburgo, Teresópolis, Petrópolis, Bom Jardim, Sumidouro and São José do Vale do Rio Preto.[3] The floods caused at least 903 deaths, including 424 in Nova Friburgo and 378 in Teresópolis.[4][5][6][7] While local media claims that the combination of floods, mudslides and landslides in Rio de Janeiro became the worst weather-related natural disaster in Brazilian history,[8][9] some contend that a similar weather-related tragedy that took place in the same state in 1967 was much deadlier, and that an estimated 1,700 people lost their lives on that occasion.[10]

The cities that reported human casualties are located in a mountainous area, in the neighborhood of the Serra dos Órgãos national park. The area is a tourist hotspot due to its geographic features, historical landmarks and mild temperatures. Many buildings, however, are directly exposed to landslide hazards because of the steep terrain.

January 2011 Rio de Janeiro floods and mudslides
Date11 January 2011
LocationTeresópolis, Nova Friburgo, Petrópolis, Sumidouro and São José do Vale do Rio Preto, State of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Property damage2.0 billion Reais ($1.2 billion USD)[2]

Flood details

In a 24-hour period between 11 and 12 January 2011, the local weather service registered more rainfall than what is expected for the entire month. Flooding of many areas in the region followed immediately. The disaster caused widespread property damage and the supply of public utilities such as electricity, running water and phone lines was affected. Around 2960 people had their homes destroyed.

The most important watercourse to inundate the region was the Santo Antônio river. According to the National Institute for Space Research, the precipitation in Rio de Janeiro was caused by a Humidity Convergence Zone,[11] a lesser form of the South Atlantic Convergence Zone. Nova Friburgo was the city most heavily affected by the floods; Teresópolis also suffered extensive damage and loss of life. In Petrópolis, the Itaipava district, an area with many luxury vacation homes, reported most casualties. Petrópolis Brewery and the local campus of UERJ in Nova Friburgo were isolated by floods.[12][13] The cities of Sumidouro, São José do Vale do Rio Preto and Areal also were struck, as rivers Preto and Piabanha rose.

It has been commented that the majority of deaths were in poverty-stricken areas, and that the impact in these areas could have been much lower if it had not been for the systematically poor conditions of Brazil's favelas. The lack of proper attention to these areas has led some to describe the disaster as "more manmade than natural."[14]

Governmental response

Destroyed households in Nova Friburgo

President Dilma Rousseff declared that an emergency R$ 780 million (U.S. $466.2 million) would become available for reconstruction workers.[15] Acting governor Luís Fernando Pezão sent reinforcements to the affected region and requested urgent federal assistance in machinery, helicopters and manpower. Rescue efforts were led by municipal governments, which also provided shelter and amenities for the newly homeless, often in schools.[16] The Brazilian Navy and the Rio de Janeiro state government set up field hospitals to assist the victims and to support rescue workers.[17] A team of workers in the operation had prior experience with the 2010 Rio de Janeiro floods and 2010 Haiti earthquake.[18] Analysts have commented that President Rousseff through her management of the crisis "passed... her first big test", but that the structural challenges that make certain (poverty-stricken) areas particularly hard hit in times of environmental disaster, still need to be addressed.[19]

International reaction

Improvised shelter for the homeless in Teresópolis
  • The prime minister of Spain, José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero, expressed his condolences over the "tragedy provoked by the storms," and offered assistance from the Spanish government.[20]
  • The Ministry of Foreign Relations of Argentina transmitted its "solidarity to the government and the people of Brazil," expressed condolences and offered "immediate aid."[21]
  • The President of Iran, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, sent a message of "solidarity to the Brazilian nation and people."[22]
  • The President of Mexico, Felipe Calderón, published a communiqué to "transmit his condolences to the families of the victims", as well as "support and solidarity in this painful moment."[23]
  • The President of Portugal, Aníbal Cavaco Silva, sent a message to President Rousseff expressing Portugal's "deep condolences and heartfelt solidarity" towards the "brotherly people of Brazil".[24]
  • The Foreign Minister of Australia, Kevin Rudd, expressed its sympathy and solidarity with Brazil, "As Australia's Foreign Minister I extend our heartfelt condolences, our sympathy, our solidarity and our support to the good people of Brazil, going through a terrible time right now. "[25]

See also


  1. ^ "Número de mortos na Região Serrana já passa de 900 após chuvas de janeiro" (in Portuguese). 15 February 2011.
  2. ^ Brasileiro, Adriana (17 January 2010). "Brazil Cities Hit by Landslides, Floods Will Need $1.2 Billion to Recover". Bloomberg. Retrieved 21 January 2011.
  3. ^ G1 RJ (14 January 2011). "Sobe para 5 número de cidades com mortes após chuva na Região Serrana". G1 RJ (in Portuguese). Retrieved 14 January 2011.
  4. ^ "Número de mortos na Região Serrana já passa de 900 após chuvas de janeiro" (in Portuguese). 15 February 2011.
  5. ^ "Sobe número de casos de leptospirose em cidades da Região Serrana atingidas pelas chuvas de janeiro" (in Portuguese). 9 February 2011.
  6. ^ "Sobe para 869 o número de mortos da Região Serrana em consequência das chuvas de janeiro" (in Portuguese). 1 February 2011.
  7. ^ World, irishtimes.com (16 January 2011). "Death toll from Brazil floods hits 600". Irish Times. Retrieved 16 January 2011.
  8. ^ "Chuva na Região Serrana é maior tragédia climática da história do país". G1 and Jornal Nacional (in Portuguese). G1. 13 January 2011. Retrieved 13 January 2011.
  9. ^ Freire, Aluizio; Lauriano, Carolina; Araújo, Glauco; Leta, Thamine (13 January 2011). "Número de mortos na Região Serrana do Rio passa de 400". G1 (in Portuguese). Retrieved 13 January 2011.
  10. ^ Paiva, Aurélio (14 January 2011)"Maior tragédia do Brasil foi na Serra das Araras" (in Portuguese). Diário do Vale. Retrieved 19 January 2011.
  11. ^ Rossetto, Luciana (13 January 2011). "Chuva em SP e em Nova Friburgo ultrapassa média histórica, diz Inpe". G1 (in Portuguese). Retrieved 13 January 2011.
  12. ^ Tabak, Bernardo (13 January 2011). "Campus da Uerj ficou ilhado em Nova Friburgo, na Região Serrana do RJ". G1 (in Portuguese). Retrieved 13 January 2011.
  13. ^ Vaz, Tatiana (13 January 2011). "Chuva paralisa fábrica da cerveja Itaipava". Veja (in Portuguese). Retrieved 13 January 2011.
  14. ^ Braathen, Einar: Brazil: Successful Country, Failed Cities?, NIBR International Blog 24.01.11 Archived 30 April 2011 at the Wayback Machine
  15. ^ Yapp, Robin (13 January 2011). "Floods in Brazil leave more than 250 dead". The Telegraph. Retrieved 13 January 2011.
  16. ^ Freire, Aluizio; Lauriano, Carolina; Leta, Thamine (13 January 2011). "Chuva espalha destruição na Região Serrana do Rio de Janeiro". G1 (in Portuguese). Retrieved 13 January 2011.
  17. ^ Corrêa, Douglas (13 January 2011). "Marinha vai montar hospital de campanha em Nova Friburgo". Agência Brasil (in Portuguese). Retrieved 13 January 2011.
  18. ^ "Housing sought for survivors of deadly mudslides". FoxNews. 16 January 2011. Retrieved 16 January 2011.
  19. ^ Braathen, Einar: Brazil: Successful country, failed cities? (NIBR International Blog 24.01.2011 Archived 30 April 2011 at the Wayback Machine).
  20. ^ "Espanha oferece ajuda à Dilma perante fortes chuvas no Sudeste". EFE (in Portuguese). Exame. 13 January 2011. Retrieved 13 January 2011.
  21. ^ "Argentina oferece ajuda imediata a vítimas das chuvas no Rio". EFE (in Portuguese). Terra Networks. 13 January 2011. Retrieved 13 January 2011.
  22. ^ "Ahmadinejad envia mensagem de solidariedade a Dilma por enchentes". Agência Brasil (in Portuguese). Editora Abril. 11 January 2011. Retrieved 13 January 2011.
  23. ^ "México envia condolências ao Brasil por vítimas de enchentes". AFP (in Portuguese). G1. 13 January 2011. Retrieved 13 January 2011.
  24. ^ "Presidente da República enviou condolências à Presidente brasileira Dilma Roussef pelas vítimas das cheias no Brasil". Presidency of Portugal (in Portuguese). 13 January 2011. Retrieved 13 January 2011.
  25. ^ "Australia extends solidarity to flood-hit Brazil". Inquirer. 15 January 2011. Archived from the original on 17 January 2011. Retrieved 15 January 2011.

External links

Media related to January 2011 Rio de Janeiro floods and mudslides at Wikimedia Commons

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2010 Colombian rainy season

The 2010 Colombian rainy season was an unusually heavy wet season that affected Colombia during the second semester of 2010. The continuous rainfalls in combination with unstable grounds and dwellings located in high risk zones contributed to the widespread damages. The flooding and associated landslides killed 174 persons, left 225 wounded and 19 others missing. 1.5 million were left homeless.


The 2010s (pronounced "twenty-tens" or "two thousand (and) tens") is the current decade in the Gregorian calendar that began on 1 January 2010, and will end on 31 December 2019.

2011 in Brazil

Events in the year 2011 in Brazil.

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2017 Mocoa landslide

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April 2010 Rio de Janeiro floods and mudslides

The April 2010 Rio de Janeiro floods and mudslides was an extreme weather event that affected the State of Rio de Janeiro in Brazil in the first days of April 2010. At least 212 people died, 161 people have been injured (including several rescuers), while at least 15,000 people have been made homeless. A further 10,000 homes are thought to be at risk from mudslides, most of them in the favelas, the shanty towns built on the hillsides above downtowns. Damage from the flooding has been estimated at $23.76 billion reais (US$13.3bn, €9.9bn), about 8% of the gross domestic product (GDP) of Rio de Janeiro State.The flooding particularly affected the city of Rio de Janeiro, where at least 60 people died, and its surrounding area. Deaths were also reported in the cities of Niterói (132), São Gonçalo (16), Paracambi (1), Engenheiro Paulo de Frontin (1), Magé (1), Nilópolis (1) and Petrópolis (1). Several municipalities, including Niterói and municipalities to the east such as Maricá and Araruama, have declared states of emergency or of public calamity. The Governor of Rio de Janeiro State, Sérgio Cabral, declared three days of official mourning for the dead.

Heavy rain started at around 5 p.m. local time (2000 UTC) on Monday April 5th in Rio de Janeiro city, and continued for 24 hours, with a total of 28.8 cm (11½ in.) of rain falling, more than was predicted for the whole of April and the heaviest rainfall for 30 years. The Brazilian TV station Globo said the rainfall was equivalent to 300,000 Olympic swimming pools of water. There were drivers who were forced to sleep in their cars. There were also firemen who used rubber dinghies to rescue passengers from stranded buses, and shopkeepers who worked very quickly to prevent the rainfall from destroying their businesses.Rio de Janeiro mayor Eduardo Paes admitted that the city's preparedness for heavy rainfall had been "less than zero," but added "there isn’t a city that wouldn’t have had problems with this level of rainfall."A further landslide hit a slum in Niterói late on April 7th. It is thought to have killed at least 150 people. Around 200 people were missing in the town as of April 13th, 2010.After nearly 300 landslides hit the area, the statue of Christ the Redeemer was cut off from traffic for the first time in history.More than 300 homes were bulldozed after the landslides, and it is estimated that close to 12,000 families will need to be relocated by 2012 due to the damage from the floods.

January 2010 Rio de Janeiro floods and mudslides

The January 2010 Rio de Janeiro floods and mudslides was an extreme weather event that affected the State of Rio de Janeiro in Brazil in the first days of January 2010. At least 85 people died, with at least 29 people in the Hotel Sankey after it was destroyed by landslides, and many more have been injured. More than 4,000 people were forced to evacuate their homes.The worst affected municipality was Angra dos Reis, about 150 kilometres (93 mi) southwest of the city of Rio de Janeiro. At least 35 people were killed at a resort on Ilha Grande: about forty people were staying in the hotel which was buried under a mudslide, and the death toll is expected to rise further. Brazil's only functioning nuclear power plant, Central Nuclear Almirante Álvaro Alberto, is also located within the municipality: plans were made for a temporary shutdown, as blocked roads would make any evacuation difficult or impossible in the event of an incident at the plant.In Rio Grande do Sul, at least seven people died and 20 went missing after a bridge collapsed due to heavy rains.Around 60 tons of dead fish washed up in a lagoon in Rio de Janeiro beginning in January, possibly as a result of local ocean anoxia caused by algal blooms triggered by increased eutrophication from the excess run-off produced by the flooding.

List of deadliest floods

This is a list consisting of the deadliest floods worldwide with a minimum of 50 deaths.

Mark Cerney

Mark V. Cerney (born April 10, 1967 in San Diego, California, U.S.) is the founder of an American nonprofit organization. He is best known for creating the Next of Kin Registry (NOKR) model.

His background includes graduating the St. John's Military School and serving with the US Marine Corps 1986-1993. He is married and has three children. The Next of Kin Registry became internationally known after appearing on CNN and Larry King after Hurricane Katrina. NOKR is an international free resource for the public to register emergency contact information that is only accessible to emergency agencies during times of urgent need. The organization was founded in 2004 and has been a resource used during Hurricane Katrina, the 7 July 2005 London bombings, the Asian tsunami, the 2012 Aurora shooting, Hurricane Sandy, the Orlando nightclub shooting, Hurricane Harvey, Hurricane Irma, Hurricane Maria, the 2017 Las Vegas shooting, the 2019 Virginia Beach shooting, and other disasters to include daily emergencies. The NOKR organization has volunteers in 50 US states and 87 countries. NOKR is the central depository for emergency contact information in the United States. The NOKR resource is used by more than 400 million registrants.

In 2005, after Hurricane Katrina, Senator Barack Obama (now former US President) introduced the National Next of Kin Registry to the 109th United States Congress in S.1630, The National Emergency Family Locator Act. The Next of Kin Registry was referenced in this bill as a standard for the Secretary of Homeland Security to consider in establishing the National Emergency Family Locator System.

In 2006 the American Red Cross partnered with the Next of Kin Registry. The American Red Cross, along with many familiar partner agencies, such as FEMA, the United States Postal Service and the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, wanted to ensure that families have a bevy of resources and options to use in order to communicate in times of disaster.

In 2007 the US Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) consulted with the Next of Kin Registry in an effort to answer HR5441 (Department of Homeland Security Appropriations Act, 2007), SEC. 689c. NOKR put forth the requested solution for the National Emergency Family Registry and Locator System (NEFRLS), which was established in compliance with Congressional legislation SEC. 689c of H.R. 5441 to help family members separated after major disasters to communicate with one another.

Mark serves as the President of NOKR in Washington, D.C., a non-profit public benefit resource used globally by emergency agencies to reunify families when emergencies happen or national disasters occur.

National day of mourning

A national day of mourning is a day marked by mourning and memorial activities observed among the majority of a country's populace. They are designated by the national government. Such days include those marking the death or funeral of a renowned individual or individuals from that country or elsewhere, or the anniversary of such a death or deaths. Flying a flag of that country and/or military flag at half-staff is a common symbol.

Nova Friburgo

Nova Friburgo (Portuguese pronunciation: [ˈnɔvɐ fɾiˈbuʁɡu], German: Neufreiburg, English: New Fribourg, commonly referred to as just "Friburgo") is a municipality in the state of Rio de Janeiro in southeastern Brazil. It is located in the mountainous region, in the Center Mesoregion of the state, 136 km (85 mi) from its capital Rio de Janeiro. The town is 846 metres (2,776 ft) above sea level. Its population was 184,786 (2015) and its area is 933 km².The main economic activities are the undergarment industry, olericulture, goat raising, various industries (textile, clothing, metallurgy) and tourism. It is also the coldest city of the state.

Rio de Janeiro

Rio de Janeiro (; Portuguese: [ˈʁi.u d(ʒi) ʒɐˈne(j)ɾu]; River of January), or simply Rio, is anchor to the Rio de Janeiro metropolitan area and the second-most populous municipality in Brazil and the sixth-most populous in the Americas. Rio de Janeiro is the capital of the state of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil's third-most populous state. Part of the city has been designated as a World Heritage Site, named "Rio de Janeiro: Carioca Landscapes between the Mountain and the Sea", by UNESCO on 1 July 2012 as a Cultural Landscape.Founded in 1565 by the Portuguese, the city was initially the seat of the Captaincy of Rio de Janeiro, a domain of the Portuguese Empire. Later, in 1763, it became the capital of the State of Brazil, a state of the Portuguese Empire. In 1808, when the Portuguese Royal Court transferred itself from Portugal to Brazil, Rio de Janeiro became the chosen seat of the court of Queen Maria I of Portugal, who subsequently, in 1815, under the leadership of her son, the Prince Regent, and future King João VI of Portugal, raised Brazil to the dignity of a kingdom, within the United Kingdom of Portugal, Brazil, and Algarves. Rio stayed the capital of the pluricontinental Lusitanian monarchy until 1822, when the War of Brazilian Independence began. This is one of the few instances in history that the capital of a colonising country officially shifted to a city in one of its colonies. Rio de Janeiro subsequently served as the capital of the independent monarchy, the Empire of Brazil, until 1889, and then the capital of a republican Brazil until 1960 when the capital was transferred to Brasília.

Rio de Janeiro has the second largest municipal GDP in the country, and 30th largest in the world in 2008, estimated at about R$343 billion (IBGE, 2008) (nearly US$201 billion). It is headquarters to Brazilian oil, mining, and telecommunications companies, including two of the country's major corporations – Petrobras and Vale – and Latin America's largest telemedia conglomerate, Grupo Globo. The home of many universities and institutes, it is the second-largest center of research and development in Brazil, accounting for 17% of national scientific output according to 2005 data. Despite the high perception of crime, the city has a lower incidence of crime than Northeast Brazil, but it is far more criminalized than the south region of Brazil, which is considered the safest in the country.Rio de Janeiro is one of the most visited cities in the Southern Hemisphere and is known for its natural settings, Carnival, samba, bossa nova, and balneario beaches such as Barra da Tijuca, Copacabana, Ipanema, and Leblon. In addition to the beaches, some of the most famous landmarks include the giant statue of Christ the Redeemer atop Corcovado mountain, named one of the New Seven Wonders of the World; Sugarloaf Mountain with its cable car; the Sambódromo (Sambadrome), a permanent grandstand-lined parade avenue which is used during Carnival; and Maracanã Stadium, one of the world's largest football stadiums. Rio de Janeiro was the host of the 2016 Summer Olympics and the 2016 Summer Paralympics, making the city the first South American and Portuguese-speaking city to ever host the events, and the third time the Olympics were held in a Southern Hemisphere city. The Maracanã Stadium held the finals of the 1950 and 2014 FIFA World Cups, the 2013 FIFA Confederations Cup, and the XV Pan American Games.


Teresópolis (Portuguese pronunciation: [teɾeˈzɔpolis], [tɛɾeˈzɔpɔliɕ], [tɛɾeˈzɔpuliɕ], [teɾeˈzɔpuliɕ]) is a Brazilian municipality located in the state of Rio de Janeiro, in a mountainous region known as Região Serrana. The Serra dos Órgãos National Park lies partly within the city limits. The city is known as the home of the Brazilian national football team, since it hosts CBF's training ground at Granja Comary.

Timeline of Brazilian history

This is a timeline of Brazilian history, comprising important legal and territorial changes and political events in Brazil and its predecessor states. To read about the background to these events, see History of Brazil.


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