Last weekend saw a true disaster happen in Imperatriz, during a Serie D clash. Roof over part of the main stand collapsed onto the seats. Thankfully, no-one was hurt as everyone had fled.
Last Saturday the football club Imperatriz (in Imperatriz, Maranhão) was taking on 4 de Julho in a Serie D (4th tier) clash at Estádio Frei Epifânio D'Abadia. The afternoon game was played without fans, in rather sunny weather, at the end of the dry period in the area.
Less than 15 minutes before the end of the game, a sudden storm engulfed the city, forcing players to leave the field. The game was put on hold but the roof proved so strong that part of the stadium’s roof caved, collapsing onto the auditorium.
The catastrophe covered roughly 40% of the main stand (south), from the most exposed east side. Once the weather eased, emergency services entered the rubble to look for potential victims. Thankfully, the area was secured. But local journalist Ananda Portilho considers this a stroke of luck.
We were all seating there. But because of Serie D’s schedule the sun was in our eyes, so we changed places. Only the radio staff remained because of their cabins’ location. And luck? The cabins on the side that collapsed were not being used. Portilho wrote on Twitter, having covered the disaster as it was happening.
Obviously, the game could not be continued on the day. Emergency services ruled out any events there until the rubble is cleared and structural integrity of the stand evaluated.