The search for hundreds of missing people has resumed after flooding and mudslides in Colombia sent torrents of water and debris crashing on to houses in the early hours of Saturday – killing more than 250 people.
The army said in a statement last night that 254 people were killed, 400 people had been injured and 200 were missing as the country’s President Juan Manuel Santos declared a state of emergency.
Days of heavy rain caused the Japura river, a tributary of the Amazon, to overflow and the avalanche of water swept through Mocoa, near the border with Ecuador.
The search for the missing resumed at dawn this morning after it was suspended last night due to a lack of power and drinking water.
Rescuers pried through piles of rocks and wooden planks that entombed homes while streets could be seen covered in thick sand, mud and tree limbs from the rivers and rainforest that surround the city.
Around 1,100 police and soldiers are believed to be involved in the relief effort.
The exact death toll is difficult to confirm as the rescue mission continues with some estimates claiming as many as 300 people have died.