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Massive cliff fall marks Albufeira’s beach of tragedy

Albufeira’s Maria Luísa beach was the site of yet another massive cliff fall this afternoon – seven years after a similar rock-face collapse killed five people, again during the packed month of August.

As we write this story, it is still unclear if there are any victims.

Initial reports via Económico website and coming shortly before 1pm suggested four people could be buried underneath the rubble, but news coming via TV stations says the situation appears to be “less serious than originally feared”.

Vaz Pinto, head of CDOS Faro has told radio station TSF: “Only after we have cleared the mass (of rock) will we be able to confirm or not whether people are
underneath”.

Meantime, other news stories have described a cliff fall in Benagil, in the borough of Lagoa, which Económico claims again to have caused injuries.

TSF radio however, suggests this fall affected a boat running grotto-trips, and that all passengers have been recovered safely.

A public statement by rescue workers is expected later this afternoon.

Maria Luísa beach was the focus of various works by APA (the Algarve environmental agency) recently, designed to make the cliffs ‘safer’.

At the time, regional director of APA Sebastião Teixeira said that the work had ensured there was no imminent risk of any fufther collapses, writes Económico – adding that only last year “a thousand tons of sand crashed onto the beach” around dawn, and only did not claim victims because of the early hour.

UPDATE:

Efforts to remove the fallen rocks have been suspended due to the rising tide which will reach its peak at around 7pm this evening. Authorities are still
described as “almost 100% sure” there are no victims, but this will only be confirmed tomorrow when the debris has been successfully removed.

natasha.donn@algarveresident.com