Portugal landslide kills at least 5

Portugal landslide kills at least 5
# 22 August 2009 11:37 (UTC +04:00)
Baku-APA. At least five people died when a cliff collapsed onto a packed beach in southern Portugal, officials said on Friday, as rescuers using pickaxes and mechanical diggers searched the rubble for victims, AFP reported.

The five dead included a 60-year-old man who suffered a cardiac arrest, a woman, 38, who died of her injuries in hospital, and three other women, two under 25 and one in her fifties, said the Portuguese emergency services.
The nationalities of the victims were not yet known.
Another three people who had been caught by the falling rubble were hospitalised with serious injuries, the statement added.
Police officers and firefighters were still searching for people who might be trapped under the debris at Albufeira, an Algarve resort popular with local and foreign tourists as well as celebrities.
The authorities, however, could not give a figure for the number that might be missing and the search was hampered by the afternoon high tide, which left most of the beach underwater.
Police cordoned off the beach, several kilometres from the town centre. Television channels showed mechanical diggers and bulldozers clearing sand and rocks from the beach.
A medical station treated people with minor injuries and a psychological support team was also on hand, the Civil Protection authority said.
Portuguese President Anibal Cavaco Silva, on holiday in the area, visited the beach for a first-hand assessment of the situation.
Prime Minister Jose Socrates cleared his desk to travel to the scene and Interior Minister Rui Pereira was also due to join them.
The cause of the accident was not yet known, although the private TSF radio station said a notice on the beach warned visitors of the danger of falling rocks.
Albufeira’s Atlantic Ocean coastline has around 20 beaches. It is famed for its clear warm waters and beautiful beaches.
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