Three killed at Belo Monte hydropower plant worksite

Belo Monte Hydropower Project

Three workers were killed and several others sustained injuries when a cement silo collapsed at the Belo Monte hydropower plant's construction site in Brazil.

According to the Belo Monte Construction Consortium (CCBM), the incident occurred Saturday when a truck was delivering to the worksite's storage area.

Emergency responders spent close to 15 hours searching for the bodies of the three deceased workers, while three others were treated at the site before being transported to a hospital in Altamira.

Police in Brazil's Para state are investigating the silo's collapse, which was able to hold about 500 tons of cement.

CCBM said it will help "with all the effort possible" in a statement.

The controversial US$26 billion Belo Monte project will have an output capacity of 11,200 MW. The plant is being built on the Xingu River and will be the world's third-largest hydroelectric complex when completed.

HydroWorld.com reported in April that power corporation Cemig Geracao e Transmissao SA had made a deal to acquire a 49% share in the plant from mining company Vale.

Belo Monte has a completion deadline of 2018, though developer Norte Energia filed a request for a construction extension this past June. A federal court rejected a request in July from from a public prosecutor to suspend work on the project because Norte Energia was accused of failing to consult properly with aboriginal groups potentially affected by Belo Monte.

For more news from Latin America, visit here.

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