'People trapped' as Sao Paulo tower block collapses after huge fire

02 May 2018, 01:34 | Isaac Mcdaniel

PMESP Sao Paulo fire The 26-storey block collapsed after it set alight

Sao Paulo fire

About 50 families reportedly were living in the abandoned building.

The network's terrifying footage shows the moment when the fire damaged too much of the structure, causing each floor to collapse on the one below as they fell like dominoes. "We don't know how many people were in the building so we don't know whether we'll find more victims in the ruins".

There have been unconfirmed reports that there were people on the top floors when the building collapsed.

In the city of são Paulo in Brazil as a result of fire struck the 26-storey residential building. Firefighters set up a perimeter and worked to evacuate people. Then squatters moved in; an Associated Press investigation a year ago found about 350 families living there.

The fire passed on to the neighboring building, but there is no threat of its collapse.

Debris could be seen smashing into the ground and occupying surrounding streets.

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Brazilian President Michel Temer visited the ruins early Tuesday morning, but rushed away after victims began throwing rocks and debris at his auto. Victims shouted "leave", behind him.

First responders are using dogs and removing rubble by hand in the hope of finding survivors, the Sao Paulo Fire Department tweeted.

Police officers look as firefighters work to extinguish the fire in a building that collapsed after catching fire in Sao Paulo, Brazil, on May 1, 2018.

The city and state governments have for years sought to remove squatters in a bid to clean up and revitalize the center of Latin America's most populous city. "Others are less established and more precarious".

Former Sao Paulo Mayor Joao Doria aggressively cracked down on these communities. Fair-housing activists had criticized his efforts saying he should focus on creating affordable housing to the tens of thousands who need it.



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