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Rio de Janeiro landslide kills 14

  • News Desk

    Agence France-Presse

Rio de Janeiro, Brazil   /   Mon, November 12, 2018   /   09:39 am
Rio de Janeiro landslide kills 14 Rescuers, residents and workers of Niteroi Cleaning Company inspect the area affected by a landslide that occured on the eve on the Morro da Boa Esperanca, Piratininga, following heavy rains in Niteroi, metropolitan region of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, on November 11, 2018. According to firefighters, a rock rolled down and hit buildings, where 11 people were rescued alive but 14 lost their lives. Fernando Souza / AFP (AFP/Fernando Souza)

At least 14 people have died in Brazil after a landslide struck their homes in the southeastern city of Niteroi in Rio de Janeiro state, officials said Sunday.

The tragedy struck in the early hours of Saturday after heavy rainfall caused a huge boulder to slide down a slope, hitting at least nine homes and a pizzeria.

Eleven people were rescued alive on Saturday, but four who remained missing were found dead in the early hours of Sunday, according to locals. Two people rescued remained in critical condition.

"It rained a lot over the past two days, Niteroi was in a state of attention and alert ... The community was advised of the situation, with the recommendation that they find safe places to stay," fire chief Roberto Robadey told Globo News.

Niteroi Mayor Rodrigo Neves told a press conference the area was not considered to be high risk.

But neighborhood association president Claudio dos Santos said one of the homes on the precarious slope had been vacated some time ago due to the risk of collapse.

Robadey said early information suggested not all the houses were occupied at the time of the landslide.

In 2010 nearly 50 people died in a landslide following heavy rains in Niteroi, which is connected to Rio de Janeiro city by a stretching bridge.