Santiago, AP – Chile’s government says 17 people have been killed and 20 are still missing after torrential rains caused flooding in a northern desert region.
The heavy rains last week swelled rivers and led to flash-flooding that also caused power outages and blocked roads.
President Michelle Bachelet’s spokesman announced on Monday that the government will provide nearly $US10 million ($A13 million) to the flood-hit areas.
The precipitation in the northern desert city of Antofagasta was dramatically abnormal.
From Wednesday to Thursday morning, about an inch of rain (24 millimetres) fell in an area that typically receives only about 0.07 inches (1.7 millimetres) of rain in a year, according to Chile’s meteorological service.