Torrential Rains Swamped Chile's Atacama Desert Region
Heavy rains in the Andes sent floods through Chile’s Atacama Desert Tuesday evening on March 24, leaving thousands without power or running water. The area is normally one of the driest in the world. Chile’s government said that 17 people have been killed and 20 are still missing. The government called a state of emergency in the region and put the army in charge of relief efforts and security. Along with causing widespread flooding, the rainstorms also washed out roads and disrupted communications. Local officials say 38,000 residents are without power and 48,000 are without potable water. Officials also order evacuation ahead of further storms.