Brazil’s World Cup stadium woes

Work on one of Brazil’s 2014 World Cup venues has been suspended after a judge ruled there were safety concerns.

The Arena da Baixada stadium in the city of Curitiba is due to stage four matches during the World Cup. Refurbishment work on the stadium is already behind schedule.

Judge Lorena Colnago said workers were at serious risk of accidents. She ordered a new inspection be carried out before work could resume.

“Countless infractions have been committed, in various stages of the building process,” the judge from Brazil’s labour tribunal said.

She said workers were in danger of “being buried, run over and of collision, falling from heights and being hit by construction material, among other serious risks”.

There was further bad news for organisers when investigators said that more than 100 workers employed to expand Sao Paulo’s international airport were living in unsuitable accommodation near the building site.

In August, Sports Minister Aldo Rebelo said he was worried about delays at five stadiums still being built for next year’s football World Cup.

The World Cup will be played in 12 stadiums across the country,with the opening game kicking off at a new stadium in Sao Paolo on June 12, 2014.

The decision to stop work on the stadium in Curitiba comes, coincidentally, on the day that FIFA produced it’s latest update on the work being done in Brazil. Each month the FIFA website provides a photographic progress report from around the country and the September edition will do little to alleviate any concerns they may have about the pace of progress.

You can see the latest images here. They comprise mostly shots of workmen standing around chatting in incomplete stadiums.

All World Cups are preceded by talk of unfinished stadiums, but the show always goes on, usually without hitch. The same will no doubt be true of Brazil, but they really do seem to be pushing it as close to the wire as is possible.