SĂO PAULO, Brazil, Jan. 13 (AP) — Firefighters searched the site of a huge crater on Saturday, a day after a hole being excavated for a new subway station in a central district of the city collapsed, swallowing cars and dump trucks. Authorities were looking for a missing minibus, carrying as many as eight people, that was feared buried under the dirt.
A bus cooperative reported that a minibus was missing and that it may have tumbled into the crater on Friday when part of a nearby street slid in, said Etrusco Juárez of the Security Department in Săo Paulo, South America’s largest city.
Mr. Juárez said the authorities had not confirmed that the van had fallen into the hole, which was about 200 feet across, but they said crews were searching the crater with the help of sniffer dogs.
Local news media said the minibus had been carrying a driver, a fare collector and four to six passengers.
Three construction workers were reported to have been injured when the walls of the excavation site gave way, but the state-owned subway company and fire department could not confirm that.
Two cars were removed from the rubble overnight, and a towering crane that had threatened to topple into the hole was stabilized.
The cause of the collapse had not been determined.