LIMA, March 16 (Xinhua) -- Peru is bracing for more deadly rain that is likely to continue until April, Transport and Communications Minister Martin Vizcarra said on Thursday.
Flooding has claimed at least 62 lives and left countless people homeless, with 750 towns in 13 regions declared to be in a state of emergency.
"There is a lot of damage, but we can overcome them," President Pedro Pablo Kuczynski said as he and Vizcarra toured an affected community in the capital Lima near the Huaycoloro River, which overflowed, leading to the closing of a major avenue.
The weather phenomenon called Coastal Nino is blamed for the heavy downpours. Coastal Nino is marked by high sea temperatures, which have gone from an average of 22 degrees centigrade to 27 degrees, according to national weather monitoring center ENFEN.
The National Civil Defense Institute said that since December, rain and flooding have damaged 18,262 km of roads in the region of Piura; washed away six bridges and damaged dozens more; left 100,000 people homeless; and destroyed several thousand hectares of crops.
Government estimates put financial losses at between 150 million U.S. dollars and 600 million U.S. dollars.
In Lima, schools will be closed until March 20, and water supply is limited in 27 districts.
Both Venezuela and Colombia have offered aid, according to the ministry.