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Two engineers arrested after fatal Brazil dam collapse

Brazil dam

Five people including two engineers, who worked on a Brazilian dam before it collapsed, have been arrested according to Sao Paulo state prosecutors.

The tailings dam, which held sludge and waste material from the Córrego do Feijão mining site, burst last Friday killing 65 people with another 279 still missing.

Reuters said that, according to a source with knowledge of the arrest orders, the two engineers were responsible for signing off on the safety of the dam.

After the collapse Brazil iron mine owner Vale said it would raise safety standards after ordering an evacuation of people living downstream of a second tailings dam at the mine site.

Vale chief executive Fabio Schvartsman said that the company has created a working group that in the next few days will present a plan to raise the safety standard of the company’s dams. The objective, according to him, is to improve on the most rigorous parameters that exist today in Brazil and in the world.

“I’m not a mining technician,” he told a press conference. “I followed the technicians’ advice and you see what happened. It didn’t work.

“It seems to me that there is only one solution: we have to go beyond any standard, national or international. We are going to create a safety mattress that is far superior to what we have today,” he said.

No details have yet been released about the cause of the collapse which is near Brumadinho in Minas Gerais State. 

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