A huge Brazil fire at a packed nightclub killed at least 232 people in the southern part of the country on Sunday. More than 130 people were hospitalized, according to Agencia Brasil.
Panic took over at the Kiss nightclub in Santa Maria as smoke filled the inside and outside of the building. Over the legal capacity, the space was almost impossible to navigate, making it even more difficult to escape.
"This overcrowding made it difficult for people to leave, and according to the information we have, the security guards kept people from leaving the building," Guido de Melo, a state fire official, said.
Around 2,000 club-goers were inside when the flames started to rise, the official said. The legal capacity for the space was 1,000. "There just weren't enough emergency exits," Mateus Vargas, a witness who was outside, told Band News.
"People started running," survivor Luana Santos Silva told Globo TV. "I fell on the floor."
Valderci Oliveira, a state lawmaker, told Band News that the scene look "like a war zone," with bodies piled up in the bathroom.
Family members and friends are still trying to identify bodies that were transported by officals to a sporting complex nearby, Agencia Brasil said.
The fire started at about 2 a.m. after the acoustic insulation caught fire, said Col. Adilomar Silva.
Watch the deadly Brazil fire rage here...