Construction and labor issues continue to plague Brazil's preparations for the 2014 FIFA World Cup.
Reuters said on Feb. 15 that it had seen a previously non-public report prepared in Dec. 2013 by Brazil's Public Ministry on a World Cup stadium in Cuiaba which suffered a fire in Oct. 2013. An independent engineer found that the fire resulted in "structural damage... that could compromise the overall stability of the construction."
"It has been impossible to get good information to this point… We will make sure that no games occur [at the Arena Pantanal stadium] until the safety is completely guaranteed." Clovis de Almeida, Brazil Public Ministry prosecutor
FIFA secretary general Jerome Valcke said Jan. 21 that building work at Curitiba's Arena da Baixada stadium was seriously behind schedule, and that it would be removed as a host city for the 2014 World Cup if it did not speed up. FIFA will announce a decision on Curitiba Feb. 18.
Six of the twelve World Cup stadiums remain unfinished ahead of the tournament which starts June 12. The construction process has been plagued by structure failures and industrial accidents.
"In a way I would say the pressure is a little bit bigger here. It's the first game. It has to be a success. The world will be watching." FIFA Secretary General Jerome Valcke
The Mane Garrincha stadium in Brasillia -- the most expensive of all the World Cup stadiums -- has a leaking roof, which became apparent during a women's game between Brazil and Chile held the weekend before Christmas. The local government said the builders will be required to pay for repairs.
A crane at the construction site of the World Cup stadium in Sao Paulo collapsed on Nov. 27, killing two people -- not three, as was initially reported -- and damaging the stadium, which is required by FIFA to be complete in December. The World Cup is set for June and July of 2014.
Days after a construction worker fell 115 feet to his death, other workers building the stadium in Manaus walked off the job Dec. 16 over safety concerns. Local reports said a labor union representing the 1,800 workers halted construction because of government pressure to speed up the project.
Heavy rainwater caused part of the roof of the Fonte Nova stadium in Salvador, Brazil, to collapse on May 27, adding to the World Cup host nation's construction woes. It was repaired by mid-June.
While investigating construction work on Sao Paulo's airport, which is being expanded ahead of the 2014 World Cup, Brazil's labor ministry found 111 workers facing "slave-like conditions." Many were recruited from distant states and forced to live in makeshift camps while waiting to be formally hired.
Qatar, which will host the 2022 World Cup, has also been accused of allowing poor working conditions as it prepares for the event.
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