Photos: Sierra Leone braces for more mudslides, mass burials still underway

Sierra Leone reels under the aftermath of Monday's mudslides near the capital Freetown which killed over 400 with 600 missing. New aerial surveillance highlights imminent danger from larger cracks in the mountainside with more rains forecasted in coming days.

UPDATED ON AUG 18, 2017 01:09 PM IST 9 Photos
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Sierra Leone races against time in a bid to avoid fresh landslides only days after a devastating mudslide on the outskirts of the capital Freetown claimed more than 400 lives with 109 among them children. Authorities have begun evacuation processes around the site of Monday’s landslide at Mount Sugar Loaf, about eight kilometres outside the capital, after examining drone images and the possibility of fresh rains. (Seyllou / AFP)

Sierra Leone races against time in a bid to avoid fresh landslides only days after a devastating mudslide on the outskirts of the capital Freetown claimed more than 400 lives with 109 among them children. Authorities have begun evacuation processes around the site of Monday’s landslide at Mount Sugar Loaf, about eight kilometres outside the capital, after examining drone images and the possibility of fresh rains. (Seyllou / AFP)

UPDATED ON AUG 18, 2017 01:09 PM IST
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A satellite image of the mudslide (C, left), in Freetown, Sierra Leone shows the scale of the damage. About 1.9 hectares (4.7 acres) of the hillside collapsed on Monday, which covered homes in a 3.6 hectare (8.9 acres) area. Fresh estimates from aerial surveillance show a 29.1 hectares (71 acres) area that is likely to collapse as the country expects more rain in coming days. (DigitalGlobe via AP)

A satellite image of the mudslide (C, left), in Freetown, Sierra Leone shows the scale of the damage. About 1.9 hectares (4.7 acres) of the hillside collapsed on Monday, which covered homes in a 3.6 hectare (8.9 acres) area. Fresh estimates from aerial surveillance show a 29.1 hectares (71 acres) area that is likely to collapse as the country expects more rain in coming days. (DigitalGlobe via AP)

UPDATED ON AUG 18, 2017 01:09 PM IST
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People wearing protective suits hold hands as they cross a river after the mudslide in the mountain town of Regent, Sierra Leone. The Red Cross estimates that another 600 people are still missing or buried in the rubble. The President of the West African nation Ernest Bai Koroma said the country is in a state of grief and mourning. (REUTERS TV)

People wearing protective suits hold hands as they cross a river after the mudslide in the mountain town of Regent, Sierra Leone. The Red Cross estimates that another 600 people are still missing or buried in the rubble. The President of the West African nation Ernest Bai Koroma said the country is in a state of grief and mourning. (REUTERS TV)

UPDATED ON AUG 18, 2017 01:09 PM IST
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A mother who lost her son during the mudslide is consoled by a sympathiser near the entrance of Connaught Hospital in Freetown, Sierra Leone. The mudslide which occurred after three days of torrential downpour overwhelmed the city’s drainage creating waterways that funnelled mud through the city’s roads. (Afolabi Sotunde / REUTERS)

A mother who lost her son during the mudslide is consoled by a sympathiser near the entrance of Connaught Hospital in Freetown, Sierra Leone. The mudslide which occurred after three days of torrential downpour overwhelmed the city’s drainage creating waterways that funnelled mud through the city’s roads. (Afolabi Sotunde / REUTERS)

UPDATED ON AUG 18, 2017 01:09 PM IST
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Heavy machines are seen during rescue work at the place of the mudslide in the mountain town of Regent, Sierra Leone. With large portions buried under the deluge of water bringing down tonnes of debris, the outcome of rescue work remains grim. (Afolabi Sotunde / REUTERS)

Heavy machines are seen during rescue work at the place of the mudslide in the mountain town of Regent, Sierra Leone. With large portions buried under the deluge of water bringing down tonnes of debris, the outcome of rescue work remains grim. (Afolabi Sotunde / REUTERS)

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Freetown is plagued by unregulated construction of large residential houses in steep hilltop areas. Deforestation for firewood and charcoal is another leading contributor to flooding and mudslides with many areas close to sea level and in proximity to the Atlantic Ocean. (Afolabi Sotunde / REUTERS)

Freetown is plagued by unregulated construction of large residential houses in steep hilltop areas. Deforestation for firewood and charcoal is another leading contributor to flooding and mudslides with many areas close to sea level and in proximity to the Atlantic Ocean. (Afolabi Sotunde / REUTERS)

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On Wednesday, the presidential office promised ‘dignified burials’ for the dead. While initial burials of at least 150 people took place on Tuesday, President Koroma (C, front) and other dignitaries including Liberian President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf (2nd L, front row) were present during Thursday’s burials. Sierra Leone is currently observing a week long period of state mourning. (Afolabi Sotunde / REUTERS)

On Wednesday, the presidential office promised ‘dignified burials’ for the dead. While initial burials of at least 150 people took place on Tuesday, President Koroma (C, front) and other dignitaries including Liberian President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf (2nd L, front row) were present during Thursday’s burials. Sierra Leone is currently observing a week long period of state mourning. (Afolabi Sotunde / REUTERS)

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Reeling under the stress of the situation, Freetown’s Connaught Hospital has been overwhelmed by the number of dead bodies being excavated with the hospital’s morgue running out of space. Aid agencies have raised concerns over a risk of cholera and typhoid outbreaks as more flooding is expected in coming days. (Afolabi Sotunde / REUTERS)

Reeling under the stress of the situation, Freetown’s Connaught Hospital has been overwhelmed by the number of dead bodies being excavated with the hospital’s morgue running out of space. Aid agencies have raised concerns over a risk of cholera and typhoid outbreaks as more flooding is expected in coming days. (Afolabi Sotunde / REUTERS)

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With 2000-3000 people displaced, and the fate of hundreds uncertain, residents in affected areas appear shell-shocked, with sentiments of blame against state authorities rising for their failure to prevent the annual occurrence of flooding and the government’s inaction in the face of illegal construction in the capital region. (Afolabi Sotunde / REUTERS)

With 2000-3000 people displaced, and the fate of hundreds uncertain, residents in affected areas appear shell-shocked, with sentiments of blame against state authorities rising for their failure to prevent the annual occurrence of flooding and the government’s inaction in the face of illegal construction in the capital region. (Afolabi Sotunde / REUTERS)

UPDATED ON AUG 18, 2017 01:09 PM IST
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