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article image300 homes buried, possibly 1000 dead in mud avalanche in Mexico

By Igor I. Solar     Sep 28, 2010 in World
Oaxaca - A mud avalanche may have buried at least 500 people in a rural town near Oaxaca in southern Mexico, officials said, while rescuers try to reach the area affected by bad weather and heavy rain.
The landslides caused by heavy rains during recent days occurred around 4.00 am local time (09.00 GMT) and wiped out hundreds of rural homes. Most inhabitants of the town of Santa Maria Tlahuitoltepec Mixe in the state of Oaxaca, most likely were in their homes and authorities are concerned that as many as a thousand people may have been buried by the avalanche, according to newspaper Excelsior on-line(in Spanish).
The governor of Oaxaca, Ulises Ruiz, told the Mexican Televisa network that could not give an exact number of houses buried up to the disaster area, but estimated to be between 100 and 300.
Asked about the death toll, the official added, "could be 500 or 600 people, but possibly as many as 1.000."
Civil Protection Director of Oaxaca, Carlos Alberto Ramos, said rescue teams were trying to reach people where the avalanche occurred, located about a four-hour drive from Oaxaca, the state capital, but adverse weather conditions make access difficult.
Authorities reported that due to bad weather in the region, several stretches of roads were blocked by landslides, making it difficult for rescue crews including the army, navy and federal police to reach the town which has about 9000 inhabitants.
More about Avalanche, Oaxaca, Mexico, Heavy rains
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