A landslide in the south-central village of Haldummulla, Sri Lanka, has caused the deaths of at least 10 people. Another 300 people have been reported missing; officials expect the death toll to rise as rescue efforts have been hampered by the risk of more mudslides.
Reuters reports that the landslide submerged over 140 houses in mud. About 75 children escaped the natural disaster because it occurred during the school day.
The landslide was at least two miles long, according to Disaster Management Minister Mahinda Amaraweera.
Heavy rains had caused several landslides in the area since mid-September, but there were no fatalities until Wednesday.
Amaraweera said the Haldummulla residents had been told to permanently vacate the area in 2005 and 2012 to avoid the threat of mudslides, but did not heed the warning. Most village residents are of Indian Tamil origin.
Publication date: October 29, 2014