Sri Lanka says 5 dead, 33 missing in mudslide
COLOMBO, Sri Lanka (AP) — Sri Lanka has confirmed that five people died and 33 remain missing in last week’s mudslide at a central tea plantation as authorities continue to struggle to determine how many people were buried.
The Disaster Management Center noted in its report Sunday that the figures could change as rescue workers continue to search for bodies in the debris at the Koslanda plantation in Badulla district, about 140 miles (220 kilometers) east of Colombo.
Soon after Wednesday’s disaster, the center said at least 250 people were missing but it has gradually reduced the number based on police records.
However, residents say that as many as 200 people could be missing because the affected area was heavily populated with more than 100 homes, a Hindu temple, playground, shops and two milk collection centers.
The center also extended mudslide warnings in six other districts as the country continues to receive heavy rainfalls.
Sri Lanka, formerly called Ceylon, is one of the world’s leading tea producers.