(Image credit: DPA)

Cries of grief, bells, and despairing voices were heard throughout the streets of the western Colombian town of Salgar as 33 of at least 82 victims of a landslide that swept through the municipality Monday were buried.

At least 45 killed in northwest Colombia flash flood, more missing and feared dead

The landslide struck early Monday morning while most residents were asleep, taking many by surprise and rendering preventive measures nearly impossible.

The force of the landslide destroyed homes and killed some instantly, creating a chaotic scene in the hours after the disaster.

Bodies were later recovered as much as 62 miles away from the initial site of the landslide after being carried downriver.

‘200 still missing’ after west Colombia avalanche kills at least 48

Food and blankets were distributed to residents left homeless by the landslide and 15 trucks of potable drinking water were delivered to the municipality.

President Juan Manuel Santos himself flew into Salgar to personally oversee relief efforts.

According to Santos, approximately $6,500 would be provided to each resident affected by the disaster to aid the rebuilding process.

At least 82 have been confirmed dead thus far, making this landslide the deadliest natural disaster in Colombia since 1999 when an earthquake hit the town of Armenia.

According to website minuto30.com, at least 15 people remain missing following the landslide.

Sources

En medio de lagrimas Salgar despidió a sus 33 primeras víctimas (Minuto 30)

Flood, Mudslide Sweep Away Homes in Colombia, Killing 58 (New York Times)

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