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Floods in Uruguay send almost 6,000 fleeing homes

Montevideo: Flooding in South America has forced almost 6,000 people to flee their homes along the Uruguay River, authorities have said.

More than 5,700 people fled their homes in Uruguay along the major waterway, as well as along some creeks flowing into it, since flooding started on May 26, according to officials in the Uruguayan capital Montevideo.

The bulk of those affected are in Salto department, a mostly rural area, as well as neighboring areas Artigas, Paysandu and Rio Negro, all on the country’s western edge, the National Emergency System yesterday said.

Flooding has grown increasingly common in Uruguay.

And authorities fret that poor people often live close to rivers and streams for convenience — only for the choice to cost them their lives.