Six dead in Brazilian canyon wall collapse

At least six people have died and nine were seriously injured when a wall of rock collapsed on top of motor boats below a waterfall in southeastern Brazil.

A tower of rocks suddenly broke away from the canyon wall and came crashing down on several leisure boats on Saturday, sending out a huge wave over Furnas Lake at Capitolio, in Minas Gerais state.

Videos posted on social media showed tourists shouting as the column of rock smashed into the water. At least one wrecked boat sank, others sped away.

Firefighters said divers were searching for 20 people believed to be missing.

Two boats were hit directly by the rocks and 24 people rescued from them alive, fire department spokesman Pedro Aihara said. Six bodies have been recovered, he said.

The people hurt in the accident had broken bones and one was in serious condition in hospital with head and facial injuries. Some 23 others were treated for light injuries, he said.

The region has been under heavy rainfall for two weeks, which could have loosened the rock face.

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