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April 26, 2017

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More rain looms for Peru after disastrous floods

LIMA -- Peruvians struggled on Sunday to cope with avalanches, mudslides and extensive flash flooding caused by torrential downpours, and forecasters predicted still more rain ahead, prolonging the country's woes.

It has been a bad year for flooding in Peru, and the toll including from the latest dangerous weather now stands at 75 since January, the government said. Devastating damage reports continue to pour in.

The National Emergency Operations Center said 99,475 Peruvians had lost everything since the

beginning of the year, while 626,928 had suffered less

serious damage to their homes. The government predicted days of more rain ahead.

On Saturday, flood waters swept into the center of Trujillo,

the country's third-largest city,

filling its streets and forcing residents

braving the waters to cling

to each other to avoid being

swept away.

The "huaycos," as Peruvians call the powerful avalanches of mud and stone that pour down from steep Andean hillsides after heavy rain, continued their damaging ways.

Mountains of mud filled

city streets, sweeping away

everything in their paths:

houses, furniture and

sometimes people.

Stranded for Days

Air travel has been affected as well.

"I've been stranded in Trujillo for five days. My family lives in a part of Lima affected by the huaycos,

but I haven't been able to get through to them," a would-be passenger, Ernesto Alvarez, told RPP radio.

"Some 500 of us are stranded here, unable to travel. We just

hope there isn't another (huayco)."

The rains affected the northern area as well. In the city of Piura, streets were again flooded by the effects of El Nino.

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