November 26, 2017 / 4:31 PM / a year ago

Soccer-Falling lantern damages roof of 2016 Olympic velodrome

RIO DE JANEIRO, Nov 26 (Reuters) - The velodrome built for the 2016 Olympic games in Rio de Janeiro was damaged by a small fire on Sunday, the second such blaze in four months, city officials said.

“The velodrome suffered damage to the roof, but there is no structural risk,” Rio’s fire department said in a statement.

The cycling track was not damaged in the fire, which was caused by a falling balloon.

The practice of making small hot air balloons is a common one in Brazil and authorities have launched annual campaigns to criminalize the practice.

Flying balloons can hamper aircraft and falling balloons can damage property and start forest fires.

A similar falling lantern caused damage to the roof and track - which is made from special pinewood only found in Siberia - in July. (Reporting by Rodrigo Viga Gaier; Writing by Andrew Downie; Editing by Phil Berlowitz)

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