Brazil flood survivors are being helped by rescuers who dig in the mud

Dozens of volunteers and rescue workers raced Monday to locate survivors in the rubble left by a devastating landslide in Southeastern Brazil.

Brazil flood survivors are being helped by rescuers who dig in the mud

Since Friday, at least 24 people have been killed by floods and landslides caused by torrential rains in Brazil's state of Sao Paulo. This is Brazil's industrial center and home to 46 millions people.

Franco da Rocha was the site of a landslide that killed at least eight people. Residents said they still hear the victims in the mud calling for help on Sunday.

Their cries were not heard Monday, making the search for the 10 missing people more desperate.

"We managed to rescue 13 people. As rescuer Alessandro da Silva and his team dug into the ravine left by a tsunami of brown and ochre water that had wiped out everything in Franco da Rocha (40 kms/25 mi) north of Sao Paulo, Alessandro da Silva said, "Unfortunately, only five of them were still living."

He told AFP that he would continue the search until all missing were found.

Red bricks, corrugated metal roofs and other remnants of overturned or eviscerated homes littered the disaster zone.

Other houses were found precariously perched at the edge the newly formed abyss.

Volunteers formed a chain to transport mud buckets as a group of rescue workers, wearing yellow uniforms and helmets, pushed through the rubble.

"There are three bodies near my neighbor's house, in a ravine hidden behind a wall. A father is holding his child. They will have to break the wall in order to get them out," Julio Bezerra da Silva, a resident, said before rescue workers removed the bodies.

"The rescue workers believe there are still more people in mud. "I pray to God that there are survivors," Da Silva, a 57 year-old resident in Parque Paulista (a working-class area) was quoted as saying.

"Yesterday, people could still call for help. But not today.

Deadly rainy season

Brazil's rainy season is characterized by deadly landslides.

They often find poorly built houses on the hillsides, as in Franco da Rocha.

Joao Doria, Governor of Sao Paulo, released 15 million Brazilian reais ($2.8 Million) in emergency funds to assist the state's 10 most-stricken cities.

Since October's rainy season began, Brazil has been subject to heavy storms. This was evident in the northeastern state Bahia where 24 people were killed, and Minas Gerais in the southeast where at least 19 people were killed and many others forced from their homes.

Experts believe heavy rains are caused by La Nina (cyclical cooling in the Pacific Ocean) and climate change.