Brazil Nightclub Fire 'Kills At Least 245 People' In Town Of Santa Maria

A fire in a Brazilian nightclub has killed at least 245 people with fears that the death toll could rise further, initial reports suggest.

The deadly blaze, at the Kiss nightclub in the city of Santa Maria, in the south of Brazil, began when a band lit a flare which ignited sound proofing foam on the ceiling, reports the Guardian.

Around 200 people have been injured.

Firefighters work to douse a fire at the Kiss Club in Santa Maria city, Rio Grande do Sul state

Fire chief Guido de Melo told the Brazilian website, G1: "Fire services are looking for other victims. We can't give an exact number [of those killed]. People started panicking and ended up treading on each other,"

He added: "We have just taken the fire under control. Now we are removing the bodies."

Rescue services had to smash through walls to reach those trapped inside.

Reports suggest many choked to death or were trampled in the rush to escape the nightclub which only had one exit.

One survivor, Aline Santos Silva, 29, told Globonews TV: "It was really fast. There was a lot of smoke, really dark smoke.

"We were only able to get out quickly because we were in a VIP area close to the door."

There may have been as many as 2000 people in the nightclub at the time of the fire.

The UK's Foreign Office Minister Hugo Swire says thoughts and condolences are with everyone involved in nightclub fire.

“I am deeply saddened by the news of the tragic accident in Santa Maria early this morning.

"My thoughts and sincere condolences are with the families and loved ones of those who have lost their lives, and I wish a swift recovery to the hundreds who are now being treated in hospital.”

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