Torrential rains transformed the picturesque French Riviera into a flood zone, leaving at least 16 people dead and three missing. Victims were found dead in a retirement home, campsites and in cars submerged in a tunnel. Residents, stunned by the ferocity of the downpour, described it as the worst flooding they had ever seen.

The Cannes region saw the equivalent of two months of rainfall in around two hours, local radio France Bleu-Azur reported. Rivers and streams overflowed their banks as more than 7 inches (18cm) of rain fell during the brief thunderstorm.

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French firefighters work on a car stuck in muddy water near an underpass in CannesEric Gaillard/Reuters
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A firefighter looks at a damaged Ferrari in Biot, south of FranceEric Gaillard/Reuters
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People look at an overturned car in a street that was damaged by flooding in Cannes, on the French RivieraEric Gaillard/Reuters
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A man runs to protect himself from heavy rain at Allianz Riviera stadium in Nice after the French Ligue 1 football match between Nice and Nantes was abandonedEric Gaillard/Reuters
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A man stands in his mud-covered living room in Biot, on the Côte d'AzurEric Gaillard/Reuters
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A figurine of the Virgin Mary floats on a flooded street in Mandelieu-la-NapouleBoris Horvat/AFP
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An upended car is partially submerged outside a house in Mandelieu-la-Napoule, southeastern FranceBoris Horvat/AFP
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A wet dog stands outside a flood-damaged house in Mandelieu-la-NapouleBoris Horvat/AFP

Record rainfall has also battered the southern United States, with areas of South Carolina overwhelmed. The torrential rainfall, that the state's governor called a once-in-a-millennium downpour, triggered flash flooding, causing at least eight deaths. The storm dumped more than 20 inches (50cm) of rain in parts of central South Carolina over the weekend of 3-4 October, the US National Weather Service said, with another two to six inches forecast for 5 October.

Flooding hit the state capital, Columbia, where the Congaree River rose 10 feet (3m) in 12 hours. Residents were advised to boil drinking water because of pipe breaks. Charleston broke its record for the greatest monthly rainfall for October in less than four days. The rain was brought by a weather system loosely connected with Hurricane Joaquin, which ravaged Bermuda and the Bahamas, leaving a cargo ship with 33 mostly American crew members missing in its wake.

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Homes are submerged in water up to the eaves in Columbia, South CarolinaSean Rayford/Getty Images
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A motorcyclist ploughs through floodwaters in Garden City Beach, South CarolinaRandall Hill/Reuters
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Two men discuss the weather while wading along a flooded street in Charleston, South CarolinaMladen Antonov/AFP
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Firefighters inspect the damage on a flooded street in Charleston, South CarolinaMladen Antonov/AFP
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A bicycle is reflected in floodwaters on a street in Charleston, South CarolinaMladen Antonov/AFP
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A house that collapsed during an overnight storm rests in the Grassy Sound in North Wildwood, New JerseyJessica Kourkounis/Getty Images
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Hurricane Joaquin is pictured off the east coast of the United States in this photo provided by NOAANOAA/Reuters
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US Coast Guard members retrieve a life preserver from the cargo ship El Faro, which went missing in the eye of Hurricane Joaquin with 33 crew members aboardUS Coast Guard/Reuters

Authorities in China and the Philippines said that a typhoon that tore through the northern Philippines before roaring ashore in southern China has killed at least nine people and left dozens of fishermen missing. Typhoon Mujigae also caused several strong tornadoes when it landed in the southern Chinese province of Guangdong, killing at least six people and injuring 168 people, local authorities said. In one case, a tornado swept up a car and killed the person inside, the civil affairs department of Guangdong said.

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A workshop that was damaged by Typhoon Mujigae is seen in Zhanjiang, ChinaChinaFotoPress/Getty Images

More than a hundred people are still missing after a deadly landslide swallowed part of a town in Guatemala. A mass of earth and rubble crashed down on a neighbourhood in Santa Catarina Pinula. Rescue teams have found more than 130 bodies and up to 150 others are missing, feared dead. Heavy rains sent earth and rock cascading over homes and trapping residents inside.

No survivors were found over the weekend, despite the efforts of around 1,800 rescue workers sifting through the rubble. Sergio Cabanas, an official at disaster agency Conred, said rescuers are continuing their search but were highly unlikely to find any more survivors.

The El Cambray II district that was battered by the landslide lies at the bottom of a deep ravine ringed by trees. Authorities had warned of the risk of flooding and landslides, saying in a report last year that construction permits should never have been granted.

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Emergency personnel work in the village of El Cambray II in Santa Catarina Pinula municipality, which was engulfed by a landslideJohan Ordonez/AFP
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A man sits next to the coffin of four-year-old mudslide victim Andres Gomez during his wake in Santa Catarina PinulaJosue Decavele/Reuters
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Relatives carry the coffins of young landslide victims at the cemetery in Santa Catarina PinulaJohan Ordonez/AFP
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A rescuer carries the body of a child recovered from the mud and debrisJohan Ordonez/AFP
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A firefighter carries the body of a child retrieved from the mud in Santa Catarina PinulaJosue Decavele/Reuters
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Heavy machinery is deployed during the search for landslide victimsJohan Ordonez/AFP
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Rescue workers dig through earth and rubble in Santa Catarina PinulaJose Cabezas/Reuters