Tuesday 31 March 2015

Floods in deserts

At the start of Flood: Nature and Culture (Reaktion Books), I wrote about how floods could happen almost anywhere – even in deserts, and included the picture above to prove it. It was taken in a desert in Arizona.

The latest proof has come in one of the driest places in the world, the Atacama Desert in Chile (a fascinating place to visit). Last week, torrential rains brought flash floods there that left two people dead and 24 missing. One was said to have been killed in a mudslide and the other electrocuted.

As the river Copiapo burst its banks, the government declared a state of emergency. 38,000 have been without electricity, nearly 50,000 without drinking water, and the government has been rescuing people by helicopter because roads have been blocked.

For the story of another deadly desert flood, in Antelope Canyon, Arizona, see my blog of 6 October 2012.

Picture by Anne Clements.  http://www.anneclements.com/

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