Violent storms in recent days have dumped a month's worth of rain on some areas in a matter of hours, devastating the southern coast of Sao Paulo state and poor neighbourhoods on the outskirts of Rio de Janeiro, the country's second-most populous city.
At least 16 people were killed early Tuesday in Sao Paulo state after floods and landslides hit the coastal cities of Santos, Sao Vicente and Guaruja, authorities said.
One of the victims was a rescue worker who was killed by a landslide.
Destruction due to rain
In Rio de Janeiro, authorities said the death toll had risen to at least five after three days of violent rain that destroyed houses, swept away cars, and left some communities covered in water or mud.
Governor Joao Doria expresses grief
I express my solidarity with those who are suffering from these heavy rains," Sao Paulo Governor Joao Doria wrote on Twitter.
Mayor Marcelo Crivella blames residents
The disaster turned political in Rio when the city's Mayor Marcelo Crivella, a far-right evangelical Christian bishop, blamed residents for the flooding.
Severe blow to city's economy
At present, Sao Paulo has resumed normal production and life, but the heavy rain has dealt severe blow to the city's economy. According to statistics, the largest farmers market in Sao Paulo, the Ceagesp market, was forced to throw away 7,000 tons of food due to the heavy rain, causing an economic loss of over $5.4 million.