Heavy Rain and Floods Kill 6 People in Sri Lanka and Force Schools to Close

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COLOMBO, Sri Lanka (AP) — Heavy rain triggered floods and mudslides and downed trees in many parts of Sri Lanka, killing at least six people and forcing authorities to close schools in some areas, officials said Friday.

Strong monsoon rains have been pounding the Indian Ocean nation for more than a week, flooding houses, fields and roads.

On Friday, a large tree fell on a moving bus in Colombo, killing five people and injuring five others, said Dr. Rukshan Bellana, a spokesperson for the capital’s main hospital.

Separately, one person died when a rock fell on his house during a mudslide in Galle district, about 130 kilometers (80 miles) south of Colombo, the state-run Disaster Management Center said.

The center said the floods and mudslides damaged hundreds of houses in 12 districts and affected more than 50,000 people, including 1,473 families who were moved to temporary shelters.

The coastal district of Matara was the worst affected, with most parts flooded for more than a week. Schools in Matara were closed Friday due to the floods and the threat of landslides.

Source: Associated Press