More than 200 dead in Sierra Leone mudslides

Aug. 14 (UPI) — At least 200 people died in a mudslide in Sierra Leone early Monday, local authorities said.

The local Red Cross put the death toll at 18, but Sierra Leone Vice President Victor Foh said, “hundreds have probably died.”

A night of heavy rain in the mountain town of Regent, near Freetown, caused widespread flooding and mudslides, and survivors could be seen walking through muddy, waist-deep water in the Freetown vicinity, the BBC reported. Many houses in the town were completely covered in mud.

Although officials said it was too early for an exact casualty count, The Telegraph reported that more than 200 bodies were taken to mortuaries.

Flooding is a regular problem in the West African country, where unstable houses are often swept away by rain during monsoon season. A 2015 monsoon there killed 10 people and left thousands homeless.

A weekend landslide in India’s Himachal Pradesh state, also prompted by a monsoon, buried two buses and killed nearly 50 people.

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