Brumadinho: Vale sustains assistance and support to the affected people
Brumadinho: Vale sustains assistance and support to the affected people
Two months after the breach of Dam I at the Córrego do Feijão mine, in Brumadinho (Minas Gerais), Vale continues focused on the recovery measures and assistance to all the affected people. The measures include accommodation, psychological and medical assistance, infrastructure recovery, financial aid and contributions to institutions that are helping the company in its humanitarian aid efforts.
So far, 269 families of the victims in Brumadinho received R$100,00.00 each; 91 owners of residences within the Self-Rescue Zone received R$50,000.00; and 70 people who have had their businesses affected by the breach received R$15,000.00. Donations can be cumulative if the person fits in more than one of the established categories: residence, rural productive activity or commercial activity.
Seeking to accelerate the emergency response to the breach, Vale signed a preliminary agreement to anticipate the emergency payments to every person that was registered as resident in the city of Brumadinho on 25/01/2019. The emergency payment also extends to those who resided within a 1km radius of the Paraopeba riverbed, from Brumadinho to the city of Pompéu, at the Retiro de Baixo dam. More than 1,300 residents of Parque da Cachoeira and Córrego do Feijão have received the indemnification. Vale signed the preliminary agreement with the Attorney's Office of the State of Minas Gerais, the Public Prosecution Office of the State of Minas Gerais, the Public Defender's Office of the State of Minas Gerais, the Federal Attorney's Office, the Federal Public Prosecution Office, and the Federal Public Defender's Office.
Psychological assistance, accommodation and logistical support
Assistance and accommodation of victims and families have been Vale's priority since the first hours after the dam breach. In addition to creating the Humanitarian Aid Committee, formed by social assistants and psychologists, Vale hired a specialized team from the Albert Einstein hospital in São Paulo, comprising trauma, grief and disaster specialists who joined the 100 health professionals that had been already working at the help centers set up by Vale, as well as in hotels and at the Medical Forensic Institute.
Several services were available at these help centers, including assistance and accommodation for the families, sorting and distribution of homeless people in hotels, registration of families of missing and deceased people for the R$100,000.00 donation by Vale, distribution of cell phone chips by Civil Defense to the families, assistance and psychological support, as well as cafeteria and free meals. The help centers also addressed demands such as transportation of collections scheduled by the Forensic Medical Institute, funeral assistance, among other humanitarian assistance services. Vale also uses the venues to supply pharmacy items, food and water to affected families.
Phone helplines were also created for recovery and/or emergency assistance requests (shelter, water, basket of staples, clothes, medicines, transport etc.), reports on missing people or requests of data from the survivors found.
Vale offered medical care in private hospitals, specifically in all Unimed network's Mater Dei clinics and health care units located in Belo Horizonte, as well as in the Felício Rocho and Madre Teresa hospitals (not in Brumadinho, as there are no hospitals in the city, only health care units and clinics). 10 hospitals and health units have been mobilized to assist the affected people; Approximately 400 professionals are currently working in five help centers set up to assist the victims, in Brumadinho, Nova Lima and Barão de Cocais; Over 6,800 medical and psychological consultations were carried out so far.
On 18 February, a cooperation agreement signed with the Brumadinho City Government resulted in the allocation of R$2.6 million to improve the humanitarian aid in the municipality. The agreement includes assistance for the affected people by a multidisciplinary team of healthcare professionals and psychological and social assistants to be hired by the City Government, in addition to purchase of emergency equipment and materials required to provide these services, allocation of 20 vehicles to transport these professionals and emergency care facilities. The new workforce will comprise 142 civil servants, including doctors, psychologists, social assistances, nurses, drivers, among others. The Brumadinho City Government will provide the training, with a contract in force for six months, which will be extended if required, as per court decision concerning the public-interest civil action proposed by the Prosecution Office of Minas Gerais. An independent external audit hired by Vale will oversee and inspect the activities.
In addition to the R$6.5 million investment in leading-edge equipment for the Forensic Medical Institute (IML) of Belo Horizonte, Vale covered funeral expenses and offered funeral aid to representatives of the deceased people. Coverage included procedures such as notary expenses, transfer of bodies, urns, ornaments, graves, burial etc.
On March 15, Vale formalized a R$20 million contribution for the Military Fire Service of Minas Gerais (CBMMG), in recognition of the work and heroism of the military firefighters in Brumadinho. R$15 million will be set aside for equipment purchase, infrastructure improvements and professional training while the remaining R$5 million will be used for the construction of buildings to aid fire training at the Academy. More than 7,000 pieces of equipment have been donated and extra training - including technical books and courses abroad - will benefit all 6000 firefighters in the state. The deadline for the delivery of equipment is between 30 and 180 days, according to availability. The renovation of the Fire Academy is expected to take up to two years. The announced contribution is not part of the TAP (Preliminary Adjustment Agreement) previously defined by Vale and authorities.
Vale is conducting the construction works of the bridge that will restore traffic on Avenida Alberto Flores, in the city of Brumadinho. The goal is to provide the communities of Parque da Cachoeira and Córrego do Feijão, among others, safe access to the central area of Brumadinho. The structure will comprise a two-way road and walkway for pedestrians. The construction of the bridge was decided in a meeting between Vale, the Department of Public Works of Brumadinho, and Civil Defense. The six foundation piles have already been installed. The next step will be the installation of the bridge deck, followed by the construction of an interconnection between the roadway and the bridge, including asphalt paving and traffic signaling.
More than 38 million liters of water for human and animal consumption and agricultural irrigation have been distributed to 19 cities: Barão de Cocais, Belo Horizonte, Betim, Brumadinho, Curvelo, Esmeraldas, Florestal, Fortuna de Minas, Igarapé, Juatuba, Maravilhas, Mário Campos, Nova Lima, Pará de Minas, Papagaios, Paraopeba, Pompéu, São Joaquim de Bicas, and São José da Varginha.
With more than 46,000 pharmacy items purchased, the total cost of supplies - including water, equipment and other logistics costs - already amount to R$270 million.
Environmental Recovery Measures
Two months following the breach of Dam I at the Córrego mine in Brumadinho, Minas Gerais, data from almost 300,000 analyses of water, soil, tailings and sediment collected from the Paraopeba river indicate that the river will be recovered. Environmental recovery depends on a set of actions, including the containment of solid tailings currently occupying the site where Vale's facilities were once located. Vale is designing a recovery plan for the Paraopeba river basin in collaboration with other companies, institutions and environmental agencies.
After the incident on 25 January, the company implemented detailed monitoring activities in the river, including daily water and soil sampling and turbidity level analysis. Currently, there are 65 monitoring points above the B1 breach site, located in the Ferro Carvão stream, in the Paraopeba and São Francisco rivers, in the reservoirs of the Retiro Baixo and Três Marias plants, and in eight other tributaries of the Paraopeba river. Tailings samples were collected from 30 points close to the B1 dam (including from dam) and from 12 points along the river.
About the situation in Barão de Cocais
As reported on March 22, Vale launched the protocol to initiate level 3 of the Mining Dams Emergency Action Plan (PAEBM) for the Sul Superior dam at the Gongo Soco mine, in Barão de Cocais (MG), Brazil. This preventive measure was required after the independent auditor informed that the dam's stability is in a critical condition. The level 3 warning siren that covers the Self-Rescue Zone (ZAS) was activated to reinforce of the preventive measure, since evacuation of the area near the dam was performed on February 8. Vale reiterates that it continues to adopt a series of preventive measures to increase the safety condition of its dams. Now at level 3, public authorities will identify and guide the residents of the Secondary Safety Zone (ZSS).
3,626 residents participated in the evacuation drill that took place today (25/3) with support from Civil Defense, the Military Police and the Fire Service. This action aimed to inform the population of Barão de Cocais about the procedures to follow in case of a dam breach.
More info about Barão de Cocais: http://www.vale.com/brasil/EN/aboutvale/reports/atualizacoes_brumadinho_home/Pages/default.aspx
The reallocated lists are reviewed daily for possible duplication, removal of persons residing outside the ZAS or the addition of new people recognized as affected by the B1 breach in Brumadinho or residents of the ZAS of the B3/B4, Vargem Grande, Forquilhas l, ll, lIl and Grupo dams and the PCH Mello plant.
The total number of relocated, up to March 21, 2019 is:
. Brumadinho: 265 people allocated to temporary housing, hotels, inns or with friends and relatives;
. Barão de Cocais (Sul Superior dam at the Gongo Soco mine): 442 people allocated to temporary dwellings, hotels, inns or with friends and relatives;
. Macacos (Dam B3/B4 at the Mar Azul mine): 201 people in hotels and inns;
. Nova Lima (Vargem Grande dam at the Vargem Grande mine): 27 people in hotels;
. Ouro Preto (Forquilhas l, ll and lll and Grupo dams at the Fábrica mine): Four people in a guesthouse;
. Rio Preto (PCH Mello): Four people in a guesthouse.
Vale reiterates that it continues to provide all necessary support to the families until the situation stabilizes.
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