- Part of cliff collapses and kills couple and seven-month-old baby in Pipa
- Mother tried to protect her son in collapse of cliff in Pipa and died hugging him, says witness
“The Municipality hired a geologist, has already done this mapping and is in the final phase of this report. From the conclusion, there will be a new MPF hearing for referrals and how to deal more conclusively with what is happening”, explained the state coordinator Civil Defense, Marcos de Carvalho.
Photo of an area close to the accident that killed a family in Pipa this Tuesday (17th) shows the wear and tear on the cliff caused by the tides – Photo: Juliane Barreto / Inter TV Cabugi
On Tuesday (17), a couple and their seven-month-old son died after part of the cliff collapsed on the beach. Hugo Mendes Pereira, 33, Stela Silva de Souza, 32, and son Sol de Souza Pereira lived in Pipa, one of the main tourist destinations in the state, and took advantage of a day off.
After the accident this afternoon, Civil Defense teams from RN and Tibau do Sul were in Pipa to decide on a possible interdiction of the stretch. The cliff-top establishments underwent inspection and, due to the high tide, only on Wednesday morning (18) will there be an assessment of the area where the accident happened.
“We know that there is an occupation at the top of the cliff and that it can cause some instability at the top. This is what we came here to do. After this inspection, there will be a meeting with the municipal chief executive for the possibility of decreeing an emergency situation,” said Marcos Oak.
Part of cliff collapsed and killed family in Pipa – Photo: Personal archive
Iiba Cortez, secretary of the Urban Environment of Tibau do Sul, explained that the municipality has been working on the completion of the technical report and believes that the collapse was intensified by the strong action of the tide.
“We have been doing a survey of the cliffs. This adds to a tidal action factor. The tides of the past two months are very violent,” he said.
She confirmed that there are inquiries at the federal and state level regarding the occupation of the beaches – both on the tops of the cliffs, and on their “feet”, in the strip of sand.
According to the portfolio holder, without the guidelines to be determined after the report, the city worked with preventive measures, such as installing signs and the presence of inspectors to warn about the risks.
“We were taking palliative, preventive measures. We carried out a survey in July with the State Civil Defense and traveled this point to Baía dos Golfinhos in relation to this signaling. We put some signs with risk of falls. Today we had a beach inspector. We put beach inspectors to warn bathers of this “, he said.
According to city hall, plates were reinstalled on different stretches of beaches in July this year – Photo: Disclosure
According to the secretary of Urban Services of Tibau do Sul, Francisco Albuquerque Neto, the City Hall had also placed a sign on the stretch where the accident happened, but it was destroyed by the action of the sea.
“We put up warning signs, but seeing that there is a difficulty because the cliff is very close to the beach, which makes it be removed by nature,” he said.
This afternoon, the Minister of Regional Development Rogério Marinho said that he determined that “Civil Defense supports the municipality in raising the causes and tackling the problem. We want to prevent tragedies like this from recurring again. Pipa is one of the main beaches in Brazil , we will work to ensure the safety of visitors. ”
Minister Rogério Marinho determined that Civil Defense should support the municipality in investigating the causes of the accident – Photo: Reproduction
Residents usually guide bathers
Residents and workers on Pipa beach said they used to warn bathers about the risks of the cliffs collapsing. According to the nautical tour entrepreneur, Igor Caetano, who witnessed the accident, the family itself had been warned about the possibility of collapse.
Pipa Beach, right after the collapse of part of a cliff – Photo: Social networks
“The sea advanced a lot and ended up digging the foot of the cliff, making it unstable. We had already warned other people to leave the cliff and even the people who died with the child had already been warned of the risk, but unfortunately they they stayed there and this tragedy happened “, he said.
The self-employed João Marinho, cousin of Stela Souza, one of the victims of the accident, has always lived in Tibau do Sul. He says that the city’s residents are in the habit of asking bathers to stay away from the cliffs, especially if they are tourists, who unaware of the danger.
“Many times we pass by the beach and see the tourists there. They put the towels and stay under the cliff. We go there and ask them to leave, because they are at risk. We notice that the barriers are falling”, said.
According to him, the collapse of parts of the cliffs has increased in recent years in the region. “It has always happened. Only for a few years now, it has been growing more and more, with the sea coming and destroying the cliff. Every day a part is falling. I, at the age of seven, eight, was off the cliff , but it got to the point of starting to hit and fall “.
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