LA PAZ – More than 1,000 families in 13 communities were evacuated from their homes in the Amazonian province of Beni because of the possible overflowing of the Ibare and Ichilo rivers, according to a civil-defense report cited Saturday by the daily La Razon.
That office said that by Friday 1,027 families in the rural Trinidad area had been evacuated, along with 111 from the two urban areas outside the Beni capital, because of the possible overflowing of rivers in the area and the forecast of heavy rains in the coming days.
The announcement by the National Meteorological and Hydrological Service, or Senamhi, of heavy downpours over the next few days sparked the evacuation of all homes in the 13 communities at risk.
The affected families were taken to camps along the Trinidad highway and on high ground near their homes.
“The families took precautions. They know that right now the water level can rise even more,” civil-defense coordinator Franklin Condori said.
The civil-defense prevention and construction director, Julio Fernandez, said for his part that Trinidad is on “red alert” because of the swollen rivers and, above all, because of water pouring down from the high river basins.
The heavy rains that have fallen in Bolivia over the last few months as a consequence of the climatic phenomenon El Niño have left 15 people dead, 36,163 families homeless and have damaged 11,500 hectares (28,400 acres) of crops.