Brazil Mining Dam Collapse: Flood of Debris Causes City Evacuation

Update: 3:04 p.m. EDT– A fire brigade has been searching for about 200 people who were still unaccounted for after a mining dam burst on Friday in Brazilian state of Mines Gerais. Authorities said that people were trapped by the river of hazardous debris that was released after the dam collapsed.

Dam operator Vale SA said that some employees were in the administrative building of the dam that was hit by the surge of sludge, Reuters reported. The company said that there would be casualties.

Officials have not released any information on fatalities.

Original story: A mining dam in southeastern Brazil collapsed on Friday, sending a stream of hazardous debris downstream.

Vale SA, the company that operates the dam, confirmed that the dam collapsed near Vila Ferteco in the Brazilian state of Minas Gerais. The Brazilian mining company said in a statement that it did not have information regarding deaths or injuries, the Associated Press said.

Tailings had reached Vila Ferteco and administrative office, Vale SA said. Sections of the city had been evacuated and firefighters were rescuing residents using ground vehicles and helicopters.

Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro announced on Twitter that he was sending three cabinet ministers to the area. "I regret what happened in Brumadinho-MG," Bolsonaro said. He said that he would send the ministers of regional development, mines and energy, as well as the national secretary of civil defense for the region.

This is a developing story and will be updated as more information becomes available.

Brazil Mining Dam Collapse: Flood of Debris Causes City Evacuation | World