More than 1,546 families have also been displaced, according to a statement released by the state Civil Defense, which also said that at least eight children were among the dead.

Firefighters and residents search for survivors near houses destroyed by a landslide after heavy rains in Franco da Rocha municipality, São Paulo state, Brazil, on Sunday.

Authorities have deployed a task force of firefighters, military police and civil defense personnel to support the mayors of the affected cities, São Paulo Governor João Doria said on Sunday.

Images from the Franco da Rocha municipality showed parts of major roads submerged, while others showed rescuers digging through the rubble for survivors and valuable belongings after a landslide destroyed homes.

Some 15 million reais (about US$2.8 million) will go to the 10 most affected municipalities, according to a statement from Doria’s office.

“(The funds) may be used to repair chronic urban problems in the municipalities that generate inconveniences such as flooding points and landslides,” the statement read.

Franco da Rocha was left underwater after heavy rain on Sunday.

The southern part of Brazil has been experiencing an increase in average precipitation, as well as extreme rainfall events, since the 1960s, in part due to increases in global greenhouse gas emissions and depletion of the ozone in the atmosphere, according to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.

The intensity and frequency of extreme rainfall and flooding are expected to increase in this area as the Earth warms.

Northeastern Brazil has also been battling heavy rains since December.

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