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Work resumes in part of Brazil World Cup stadium

The Associated Press

SAO PAULO (AP) -- Construction can resume in part of the stadium where a worker died while installing temporary seats for the World Cup opener, Brazilian labor officials said Monday.

Work had been partially stopped at the Itaquerao stadium because of safety concerns following the man's death on March 29.

Officials from the Labor Ministry inspected the venue on Monday and said most of the necessary safety measures had been implemented where the seats were being installed. Not all work at the stadium could resume, however, because construction crews had yet to install protective nets in another part of the site.

Brazilian World Cup organizers and FIFA said the delay should not keep the stadium from being finished in time for the Brazil-Croatia opener on June 12.

Work at the Itaquerao stadium had already been delayed before the worker's death, which was the third at the stadium and seventh overall in World Cup venues in Brazil. Two workers died at the stadium in late November when a crane hoisting a giant roofing structure collapsed.

FIFA expects the venue to be fully ready in mid-May, about a month before the inaugural match of the tournament.

About 20,000 temporary seats are being installed behind the goals to increase the stadium's capacity to nearly 70,000. Officials have allowed construction to resume on the south side, where the worker died, but said more had to be done to improve the safety conditions on the north end.

Authorities said work should be able to resume there by Friday, following a new inspection scheduled in the next few days.

An initial investigation showed that 23-year-old Fabio Hamilton da Cruz fell from about 26 feet (8 meters) after failing to connect to a safety cable. Officials halted construction because they said additional safety measures could have prevented his death even though he wasn't connected to a cable.

Fast Engenharia, the company in charge of building the temporary seats, has denied any wrongdoing.

Two other stadiums still remain under construction in other parts of the country - one in the wetlands city of Cuiaba and another in the southern Brazilian city of Curitiba.

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