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Four die as truck smashes bridge

At least four people died after a truck smashed into a pedestrian bridge causing it to collapse onto a busy road in Brazil.

There were only two people on the yellow metal bridge in Rio de Janeiro when the accident happened just after 9 am. Normally it would be crowded at that hour, but is was quieter because of Brazil's summer holidays.

But the girders crashed down on three cars and a motorbike.

Mayor Eduardo Paes said that the trailer of the truck was clearly above the 4.5 meters permitted for use on the highway, known as the Yellow Line road, which cuts through northern and western portions of Rio.

Mr Paes said they were trying to confirm if the truck's bed was raised when it hit the walkway. Regardless, "an infraction was being committed because trucks aren't allowed on the Yellow Line at that time of day."

Valeria da Paixao, the director of a daycare center near the site of the accident, told Globo TV that she "heard a loud noise, like an explosion."

"The walkway is used by many mothers who bring their children to our school," she said. "Thank God it's vacation time and we're closed. If it happened when the school was open we would have had a major tragedy."

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