Electrical work halted at World Cup stadium after worker's death

BRASILIA Fri May 9, 2014 12:58pm EDT

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BRASILIA (Reuters) - Electrical work at a World Cup stadium under construction in the Brazilian city of Cuiaba was halted until safety precautions were taken, following an electrical accident that killed a worker, labor authorities said on Friday.

The labor prosecutor's office in Mato Grosso state said that Etel Engenharia ,the electrical contractor, must assure safety conditions for workers before it can resume work at Arena Pantanal.

Muhammad-Ali Maciel Afonso, 32, who worked for the contractor, died after an electrical accident on Thursday at Arena Pantanal. Afonso was the eighth worker to die during construction of twelve arenas that will host games for the month-long soccer competition.

Builders were scrambling to finish several stadiums on time before the tournament starts on June 12.

Arena Pantanal, in the heart of Brazil's farm belt, is one of three delayed World Cup stadiums still being built.

The unfinished stadium held a test match last month, but workers are still adding seats, wiring and other final touches. An October fire caused structural damage at the stadium that has since been repaired.

The 2014 World Cup, the first to be held in Brazil since 1950, has been beset by delays, cost overruns and broken promises. In addition to the late delivery of stadiums, several key public transportation projects have been scaled back or abandoned altogether.

(Reporting by Alonso Soto; Editing by Jeffrey Benkoe)

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