At least nine people were killed Saturday in a landslide caused by heavy rains in southeast Brazil's Niteroi municipality, part of the Rio de Janeiro Metropolitan Area, according to local authorities.
Heavy rains that have pummeled the region for the past three days led to a huge rock dislodging, leaving at least six homes destroyed early Saturday, Brazil's civil defense authorities said.
Nine people, including one minor and two elderly women, were found dead in the rubble and another 11 were rescued. Firefighters and civil defense personnel are still searching for survivors.
The area was not considered a high-risk geological area and the landslide was caused by a crack in the ridge of the hill where the affected community is located, Niteroi Mayor Rodrigo Neves told reporters.
"The community had been warned of the situation and had been urged to look for safe places," said Roberto Robadey, Rio's Civil Defense department head.