the Mexican Government was forced to declare a state of emergency in four states in the first week of October after the worst flooding in 40 years which killed 15 people and forced the evacuation of more than 100,000 others. Torrential rainfall for a week has caused seven rivers to overflow. In the state of Tabasco, residents were alarmed by reports of crocodiles up to eight feet long roaming the flooded streets of the capital, Villahermosa. Local officials said on Tuesday that the police shot one of the creatures as it moved toward a populated neighbourhood.
Warning that water levels will rise further, state authorities urged people to evacuate from low-lying communities along the Grijalva, Usumacinta and Carrizal rivers in Tabasco. "We cannot wait for the situation to worsen," the Tabasco civil protection chief, Sergio Jimenez Urgell, said in a radio address.