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Rio Olympic Stadium closes for roof repairs

Mar 27, 2013, 9:16 AM EST

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The Rio Stadium that will host track and field event for the 2016 Olympics, the Engenhao, has been forced closed by authorities, who say structural problems with the roof make it unsafe for public events.

“I asked them if these problems posed a threat to fans and the answer was ‘Yes,’ depending on circumstances such as wind velocity and temperature,” Rio Mayor Eduardo Paes told the Associated Press. “There was a risk, so I decided to close the stadium immediately until we have more details about the solution that we will need.”

Three different reports showed that the structural problems might present risks, so the mayor said that, whether it takes a month or a year, the stadium will stay closed as long as it has to in order to ensure the safety of those coming to watch events.

“I will wait until a definitive solution if presented. We can’t play with something like this.”

The stadium, built in 2007 for the Pan American Games, was hosting the Rio state football championship and the Copa Libertadores, a club tournament. Both had to be moved, but it’s obviously not likely to affect the Olympics, which are more than three years away.

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