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Blackout hits Brazil's biggest cities

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Blackout hits Brazil's biggest cities

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It is a night Brazil will remember for a very long time. A massive blackout plunged South America’s largest country into darkness, leaving millions of people in its two biggest cities without power.

The lack of street lights sparked fears of an opportunistic crime wave in Sao Paulo and Rio de Janeiro. Cities in several other southern states were affected as was, briefly, neighbouring Paraguay. Problems at the Itaipu dam on the Brazil-Paraguay border have been blamed for the blackout but the exact cause is still being investigated.

Three to four hours after the lights went out, there was a gradual return of power in Brazil.