LIMA A hotel slid into a Peruvian river after rains and flooding eroded the riverbank on which it stood, local media reported Thursday.
The three-story La Hacienda tourist hotel in the southern Huancavelica region had been evacuated before the disaster and its collapse into the Sicra River was filmed by residents in the district of Angaraes.
According to the images captured by eyewitnesses, the foundations of the building were undermined by the rise in the river waters after an intense rainstorm lasting more than four hours.
After it had been confirmed that nobody was injured in the accident, Angaraes Mayor Balvino Zevallos told Canal N television that his office had not authorized the construction of the hotel.
We, at least in this administration, gave nobody permission or authorization to be able to build (in the area), Zevallos said prior to blaming the prior municipal administration for allowing construction of the hotel and homes near the river.
The mayor requested Peruvian government support to build a river protection wall or berm in the area, saying that last year he presented such a project to the Agriculture Ministry but he has still not received a response.
The National Civil Defense Institute (Indeci) reported Thursday that its preliminary assessment is that the intense rains in central and southern Peru have rendered 1,248 people homeless and affected 28,245 more in one way or another.
The COEN emergency operations center said that 103 homes have been destroyed, 192 rendered unlivable and 7,124 have been damaged by flooding and mudslides caused by the rains.
Indeci said that teams of specialists have been mobilized to provide technical assistance to local authorities in the affected zones, and warehouses full of humanitarian aid can be tapped to help people affected by the rains and flooding.
Local media reported that in the last few hours a mudslide in the Chaclacayo district in the mountains near Lima has blocked the Central Highway linking the capital to the central part of Peru.