NINE Brazilian firefighters have been killed after a cave collapsed in a training drill as crews rushed to pull survivors from the rubble.
The tragic accident occurred as a group of 26 firefighters were training in a cave near the city of Altinopolis, the Sao Paulo fire department confirmed.
Police and emergency health teams have joined firefighters in a desperate effort to free those nevertheless retained, but the work has been hampered by heavy rains.
Access to the far away site was difficult, and threats of new collapses complicated the rescue attempts.
And reports have now confirmed that all nine firefighters inside the collapsed cave have died.
The fire department said: “There were 9 dead and one person rescued. There are no more victims at the site.”
Earlier, officials had said there were three dead and six missing. The identities of the victims have not in addition been reported.
Sao Paulo Governor Joao Doria said on Twitter he would provide “all the sustain and resources necessary for the rescue of the victims.”
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