Brazil: Sao Paulo building collapse 'kills seven'

The aftermath of the building collapse in the district of Sao Mateus

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A commercial building has collapsed in a suburb of the Brazilian city of Sao Paulo, killing at least seven people and injuring many more, officials say.

Rescue workers have been searching for survivors in the rubble. A fire service spokesman said 26 had been pulled out alive.

The two-story building was under construction, according to local media.

Reports said a clothing store was being erected at the site, located in the poor eastern district of Sao Mateus.

'Cautious'

The cause of the collapse is not yet known.

Map shows Sao Paulo, Brasilia and Rio de Janeiro in Brazil

Officials believe about 35 people were in the building when the accident happened at about 08:35 local time (11:35 GMT).

Television pictures showed extensive damage both to the collapsed building and the surrounding area.

"Right now the work is slow, very cautious, because to pull people from the rubble we need a lot of technique and patience," firefighter Marcos Palumbo told Globo TV.

Building collapses of this kind are common in Sao Paulo - Brazil's largest city - and particularly affect structures that are either poorly maintained or still under construction.

Home to 11 million people, Sao Paulo is one of 12 Brazilian host cities for next year's World Cup.

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