In the Brazilian port city of Santos, this year’s anticipated Carnival celebration was struck by tragedy after a parade float caught on-fire — burning four people to death.
According to authorities the fire began after the float accidentally struck a power line and caused a short-circuit. As a result of the accident, electricity was cut from thousands of homes and street lamps- sending the area into ominous darkness until dawn on Tuesday.The float, which was designed as a tribute to soccer legend Pele, belonged to samba group called Sangue Jovem (Young Blood). Sources confirm that three of the victims were pushing the float and the fourth victim was a female bystander watching the parade. Five others were injured, their condition unknown.
This news comes less than a month after the catastrophic night club fire that killed 239 people in Santa Maria, Brazil. These isolated events are raising questions about the lax enforcement of safety and fire codes across Latin America’s biggest country. These concerns are particularly significant considering Brazil is set to host the World Cup in 2014 and the Olympics in 2016.