Brazilian cities crack down on nightclubs after deadly fire
SANTA MARIA, Brazil (REUTERS) - Cities across Brazil are beginning to crack down on nightclubs to ensure they comply with fire regulations following a weekend blaze that killed 231 people at a club in the southern university town of Santa Maria.
The fire was Brazil's deadliest in half a century and resonated across the country, with many people demanding those responsible be prosecuted and that the government tighten up on safety.
Brazilians are outraged at what they see as lax regulation and corrupt officials whose oversights led to the tragedy. There are fears similar fires could happen at other clubs and public venues, especially as the country gears up to host the World Cup of soccer next year and the Olympic Games in 2016.
Sensitivity is also growing because Brazil is in the runup to next month's Carnival celebrations. The event routinely features throngs of unruly revelers in parades and street parties in cities across the country.