Drama in Brazil: at least 7 dead and 3 missing after a rock fall in a tourist lake
Eva Deschamps / January 9, 2022
The fall of a cliff on boats sailing in a lake very tourist in the state of Minas Gerais, in southeastern Brazil, has killed at least seven people and three missing Saturday, said firefighters.
At this stage, there are seven dead and three missing, said in a recent report the spokesman for the Minas Gerais fire department, Pedro Aihara. The previous report stated six dead and 20 missing, in addition to 32 injured. The number of missing people had been initially estimated on the basis of testimonies, tourism agencies and relatives, explained the firefighters. At midday, a large fragment of rock broke off from its wall and fell on three boats that were walking on Lake Furnas, a site prized for its green waters and its parade of spectacular rock faces. In dramatic images shared on social networks, one could see the precise moment when the rocky mass detached and fell on the three boats, spreading panic among the passengers attending the scene on other boats.
On other recordings, just before the tragedy, people can be seen issuing warnings that many rocks are falling and calling on the occupants of the boats to move away from the wall. President Jair Bolsonaro shared some of the videos on social networks, praising the work of the Brazilian Navy, which as soon as the unfortunate disaster occurred moved to the site and worked to rescue the victims and transport the injured. Among the injured, nine were hospitalized, according to the firefighters who intervened on site with various equipment and a squad of divers. The research had to stop with the night for security reasons and resume the next day.