At least 40 people were killed and 300 are missing after a dam burst on Friday, January 25, at an iron mine owned by Vale in Brazilian, the local fire department have confirmed.
The Minas Gerais state fire department told local media on Saturday, January 26, that 23 people have been hospitalized after the dam released a torrent of mud, leaving a 150-meter-wide wake of destruction.
In an earlier statement, the department reported that 300 people were still missing and 46 had been found alive.
Firefighters are finding survivors on a train, a bus, mining offices and nearby homes which were buried in mud after the dam broke down at Vale's Corrego do Feijao facility in Minas Gerais state.
Family members of the missing people have been gathered into a warehouse set up by Vale for the victims.
A dozen of helicopters has continued to survey the area in order to rescue the victims.
The governor of Minas Gerais, Romeu Zema, told local media, "Unfortunately, at this point, the chances of finding survivors are minimal. We're likely to just be recovering bodies".
The cause of the accident has not been revealed. Vale president Fabio Schvartsman says the company had boosted security at dams.
Brazil's Environment Ministry has reportedly announced a prompt fine of 250 million Brazilian real ($66.2m) to the mining company.
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