At least one killed in Brazil residential building collapse

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A residential building has collapsed in Brazil with one reported death. (iStock)
A residential building has collapsed in Brazil with one reported death. (iStock)

At least one person was killed when a seven-story residential building collapsed in Brazil on Tuesday, an official said, as rescuers searched through the rubble for survivors.

Seven people were pulled alive from the wreckage of the building in Fortaleza, the capital of the northeastern Ceara state, after it imploded, sending thick clouds of dust into the air, cell phone footage broadcast by Globo TV showed.

Rescuers were trying to reach two people trapped in the debris, while 10 have been reported by their relatives as missing.

Vehicles parked in the streets around the scene were covered in dust.

It was not immediately clear what caused the building to collapse at around 10:30 am (1330 GMT), when most people would have been at work.

"There could have been 10 to 15 people inside the building at the moment it collapsed, but these numbers are totally speculative," Lieutenant Romario Fernandes, a spokesman for the state fire brigade and civil defense, told Globo TV.

Rescuers wearing bright orange clothing scrambled over the rubble as they searched for more survivors.

Building collapses in Brazil tend to happen in poor neighborhoods, known as favelas, where illegal construction is rampant.

But TV footage shows the tower in Fortaleza appears to be in an upper middle-class area near the city center, which is populated by many modern-looking buildings.

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