Colombia’s President Juan Manuel Santos visits Bello, north of Medellin, to inspect efforts to rescue an estimated 94 residents who are thought to have been buried under 50,000 cubic meters of earth. The bodies of 30 victims have been recovered so far.
Santos spent half an hour at the disaster site, where he thanked rescue workers “in the name of Colombia for the work being done.”
Early on Tuesday Santos met with local authorities and the agencies involved in the rescue operations to review the actions being taken. Rescue workers’ efforts are focused on recovering the bodies of those missing, presumed dead, and helping residents who lost their homes or were forced to evacuate.
Santos also ordered the immediate evacuation of other parts of the “La Gabriela” neighborhood, because officials have shown him “sites where possibly the same can happen as what happened Sunday. This we must avoid,” said Santos.
The Bello landslide is the deadliest incident related to the rainy season in the history of Colombia and is expected to raise the total fatalities from this year’s unusually heavy rainy season to 300.