[:en]Access to the Bento Rodrigues Dam has been completely closed off due to risk of rupture at another dam[:]

[:en]According to Lt. Sebastião Nogueira, from the Military Police, the security zone was expanded from three to ten kilometers, because “the Germano Dam cracked and is in risk of breaking.”

The fear of a new tragedy in Mariana, in the Central Region of Minas Gerais, resurfaced this Wednesday morning. The Bento Rodrigues area, the hardest hit by the torrential mud that came down from Samarco’s two mines, has been condemned and access to the district has been completely sealed off by military police. According to Lt. Sebastião Nogueira, of the Shock Troop Battalion from the 3rd Company of Special Missions of Lagoa Santa, the security zone was increased from three to ten kilometers because “the Germano dam cracked and there is a risk of breakage.” Samarco reported that they have been working to give more stability to the mine. Faced with this problem, the Fire Department changed its missing person rescue strategies because of the risks.

Residents were surprised by the news when they were returning to the district to pick up pets and documents from their homes, which had been abandoned by them in a hurry when mine waste flash flooding broke out. “People, unfortunately I have bad news to give you. With the breaking of the Fundão Dam, the Germano Dam wall support is cracked. The company is making repairs. So, there will be no more people going down to Bento Rodrigues. Right now, we have to preserve human life. If we allow people going down there, maybe they won’t come back,” said Lt. Nogueira.

According to the military, firefighters are on hand at the site comprised of a team of 10 men and 7 dogs. An aircraft is on standby to rescue them if necessary. “I apologize to you, but I count on your understanding, because from now on, the blockade (sealed off area) will be transferred and extended out to the Santa Rita Durão asphalting limit,” he affirmed. The enclosed area was once done by the military at a distance of three kilometers from the district. Now, there will be 10 kilometers.

During a conversation with locals, the lieutenant said that if the dam bursts, the mud could rise above lampposts. “Bento Rodrigues is condemned for at least 30 days. There is no way to measure when this situation will occur,” said Nogueira. He said the village of Paracatu de Baixo has been fully evacuated. Other districts below Bento Rodrigues are on alert.


Deixe uma resposta

O seu endereço de e-mail não será publicado. Campos obrigatórios são marcados com *