SA miners to review tailings dams after Brazil disaster

SA miners to review tailings dams after Brazil disaster

Watch: The moment Vale's tailing dam collapses

The disaster happened in the municipality of Brumadinho on January 25 when a tailings dam collapsed and sent 13 million cubic meters of sludge and mud down the hill.

The Minerals Council said its board, which held a meeting on Wednesday, conveyed its sympathy and condolences to the people of Brazil, in particular those whose lives have been affected by the tailings dam disaster at Brumadinho.

A priest also gave a brief Mass in front of a tall pink cross that had been planted in the mud.

Newly-released video footage shows the harrowing moment a mining dam collapsed, unleashing a powerful wave of waste that swept over everything in its path in Brazil. Five arrests have been made, and prosecutors in Brazil revealed three of those arrested were Vale officials.

Lt. Pedro Aihara of the Minas Gerais state Fire Department said that some bodies may never be found under the tons of mud that swept through a rural area of Brumadinho.

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Edvan Cristi, 23, who lost several friends who worked for the Vale mining company, said the city would suffer tremendously because most young people worked in mining.

Vale said Friday it is expanding financial aid to those affected by the dam collapse.

Vale SA, the company that ran and operated the dam, said the residues did not have risky levels of metals, but experts argue the impact on the environment could be irreversible.

Authorities and environmental organisations have begun testing water quality around the mining complex, while state and federal authorities have told residents to refrain from using water directly from the Paraopeba or 100m around it.

A march in homage to the victims is expected to take place later on Friday in the centre of Brumadinho.

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