Total Pageviews

Sunday, January 27, 2013

Fire at a Nightclub in Southern Brazil

Victims of the fire are attended by medics.

An intense fire ripped through a nightclub crowded with university students in southern Brazil early on Sunday morning, leaving behind a scene of horror with bodies piled in the club’s bathrooms and outside on the street.

At least 245 people were killed, police officials said.

As my colleague, Simon Romero reports, a flare from a live band’s pyrotechnic show ignited the fire in the nightclub, called Kiss, in the southern city of Santa Maria. Throughout the morning on Sunday, rescue workers hauled bodies from the still smoldering building.

One video posted to YouTube showed several bodies of apparently unconscious vicims splayed on concrete outside of the club as medics check them for signs of life.

Shortly before the fire, a club D.J. posted a photo on Facebook from inside the crowded club with the caption: “Kiss is pumping.”

A short time later, another photo purportedly taken inside the club and widely disseminated through social media showed smoke billowing on the crowded dance floor.

The fire quickly engulfed the building.

Firefighters battle nightclub blaze in Brazil.

Firefighters, apparently joined by volunteers who shielded their faces with T-shirts, struggled to pull people from the burning building.

Firefighters and volunteers tried to pull people from the burning building

Photos from the scene showed frantic friends and family members gathered outside the club and the hospital.

Follow Michael Schwirtz on Twitter @mschwirtz.