8 Feb 2011

Fire tears through Rio carnival district

6:51 am on 8 February 2011

A large fire has broken out in the carnival district of Rio de Janeiro, in Brazil.

The fire spread quickly through Samba City and destroyed some of the warehouses where costumes for this year's carnival were being prepared.

The world famous event, which attracts hundreds of thousands of tourists, is due to take place early next month.

Organisers say they are heartbroken because of the tremendous damage that has been caused.

At least four warehouses, a samba school and a carnival museum have been damaged.

It is unclear whether anyone was injured in the blaze, which began early in the day, well before employees were due to start work at the carnival warehouses.