Nearly 55,000 people are staying in just over 600 shelters, Meléndez said Friday.
In Guatemala 38 people have died, nearly 30,000 have been evacuated, and more than half a million have been affected by the rains, according to its emergency management agency.
On Wednesday Guatemala’s government canceled la Vuelta a Guatemala, a cycling race that is one of the country’s biggest sporting events, which was to start this Sunday.
The U.S. said it would give $50,000 in humanitarian aid to Guatemala, and Taiwan has donated $300,000 to Guatemala and $200,000 to Honduras, where 18 people have died, according to the AP. The death toll is 13 in Nicaragua. The rains have been less intense in Costa Rica and Mexico, but still five people have died in Costa Rica trying to cross swollen rivers, according to reports there.
With floodwaters turning stagnant, health concerns are mounting, and the World Health Organization has sent a monitoring team to Nicaragua to check out possible new cases of the H1N1 flu virus.