RIO DE JANEIRO, March 24 (Xinhua) -- Some 20,000 people have been affected by devastating floods as the Madeira River in northern Brazil burst its banks, state media said Monday.
Madeira's water level rose to a record high of 19.52 meters due to heavy rainfall, which caused monsoon floods that affected communities along the river, including several neighborhoods in Porto Velho, capital of the state of Rondonia, Brazilian news agency Agencia Brasil reported.
In Porto Velho alone, 3,262 families have been displaced after various rivers and their tributaries, including the Mamore River along the Brazil-Bolivia border, burst their banks.
The BR-364 federal highway, which is an overland route between Rondonia and the Atlantic coast, has been inundated, causing supply problems as trucks are unable to enter the flood-hit region.
According to regional Civil Defense services,the water level of the Madeira River, a tributary of the Amazon River, should fall by the end of the month.