Brazil travel advice: Foreign Office updates warnings for destination after flash floods in Rio Grande do Sul kills 75 people with over 100 missing

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The Foreign Office has issued new travel warnings for Brazil after flash floods hit Rio Grande do Sul killing 75 people

The Foreign Office has updated its travel advice for UK holidaymakers heading to popular destination Brazil after massive floods have killed at least 75 people over the last seven days. The floods hit Brazil’s southern Rio Grande do Sul state and 103 have been reported missing, local authorities said on Sunday (5 May).

At least 155 people have been injured, while damage from the rains forced more than 88,000 people from their homes. Approximately 16,000 took refuge in schools, gymnasiums and other temporary shelters.

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During Sunday mass at the Vatican, Pope Francis said he was praying for the state’s population. He said: “May the Lord welcome the dead and comfort their families and those who had to abandon their homes.”

The Foreign Office has issued new travel warnings for Brazil after flash floods hit Rio Grande do Sul killing 75 people. (Photo: Getty Images)The Foreign Office has issued new travel warnings for Brazil after flash floods hit Rio Grande do Sul killing 75 people. (Photo: Getty Images)
The Foreign Office has issued new travel warnings for Brazil after flash floods hit Rio Grande do Sul killing 75 people. (Photo: Getty Images) | Getty Images

The massive floods are the fourth such environmental disaster in the state in a year, following floods in July, September and November 2023 that killed 75 people. The Foreign Office updated its travel advice information on rainfall and flooding for Brazil on its ‘Safety and security’ and ‘Regional risks’ pages.

Under ‘Safety and security’, the government says: “The rainy season runs from November until March in the south and south-east (including Rio de Janeiro – see Regional risks) and from April until July in the north-east of Brazil. However heavy rainfall and flooding can also occur outside of the designated rainy seasons, in any region of the country.

“Heavy rains often disrupt infrastructure, particularly in rural areas. Flash floods and landslides, especially in poorer urban areas, are common during heavy rains. Monitor local media and follow any instructions given by the local authorities.”

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Under ‘Regional risk’s the Foreign Office warns that heavy rainfall “can lead to localised flash floods, as well as landslides in regions where mountains are close to the coast such as Rio de Janeiro” and “tourist areas”. It adds: “Follow local authority warnings which are displayed on digital street signs and sent to hotels and hostels. Heavy rainfall and flooding can also occur outside of the designated rainy seasons, in any region of the country.”

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