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Chile flooding leads to water crisis
00:46 - Source: CNN

Story highlights

Nearly 5 million people don't have access to drinking water

Flash floods have killed 3 people, 19 are missing

CNN  — 

Recent rainfall over the weekend left millions in the capital of Santiago, Chile, without access to running water.

The flooding has caused runoff and debris flows into the Maipo River, which is the main water supply for the capital city. As a result, authorities had to cut water access that has left close to 5 million residents scrambling to find alternatives for fresh drinking water.

Recent drought and wildfires have created a situation where the land cannot retain the rainwater, making it easier for mudslides and debris flows to occur. This has contaminated the river and authorities can not reopen the water supply until the water runs clear.

The flash floods have also claimed the lives of three people and left 19 missing. Hundreds have also been cut off from the subsequent landslides from the storms.

Landslides have covered some areas in layers of mud.

Authorities with Aguas Andinas – the main water supply company for the region – are working on restoring services. So far they’ve been able to restore service to 100,000 homes, but the process is taking time and could only be complete by tomorrow.