Death toll in Chile landslide climbs to five

    17 de diciembre de 2017

    Santiago, Dec 16 (efe-epa).- The death toll from a landslide that hit a town in Palena province of Chile's Patagonia region on Saturday climbed to five, while 15 people were missing and eight were injured, authorities said, adding that around 20 houses were damaged or destroyed.

    President Michelle Bachelet has declared the area affected by the landslide a disaster zone, expediting the delivery of resources and the mobilization of personnel to deal with the destruction.

    The landslide was triggered after torrential rainfall in the area caused a hill to collapse, burying half the town, which has a population of around 280 people.

    "We will continue to be on the ground to be able to ensure that all resources are mobilized to support those families directly," Bachelet said at the end of a meeting with disaster management officials.

    "We are going to have all the resources that are necessary to tackle this new natural disaster," added the president, who did not rule out travelling to the area, if necessary.

    A total of 20 houses were destroyed or damaged in the landslide and the town continues to be without power and drinking water, although two water trucks have been sent to the area.