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Heavy snowfall causes $250 million damage in Chile

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Heavy snow in Chile, the worst in eight years, has caused an estimated $250 million worth of damage, Spain's news agency EFE said Friday citing local authorities.
MOSCOW, August 10 (RIA Novosti) - Heavy snow in Chile, the worst in eight years, has caused an estimated $250 million worth of damage, Spain's news agency EFE said Friday citing local authorities.

"The losses, so far, total some $250 million and at least 38,000 jobs have been lost temporarily," the news agency said citing Luis Schmidt, the head of the National Agriculture Society.

Heavy snow has been falling for several days and has completely paralyzed some districts of Santiago, damaged power lines and some pipelines. Thick layers of snow have covered highways causing numerous traffic accidents, but authorities said there have been no reports of casualties.

Schmidt also said that "the greatest damage had occurred in the region of Araucania, 600 kilometers [about 370 miles] from Santiago, where there are areas that have been buried under one or two meters."

Meteorologists say heavy snow will continue throughout the week and temperatures will only then gradually start climbing above zero (32 degrees Fahrenheit).

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