With her house caving in around her, she grabbed a child in each arm — but she couldn't hold onto them in the torrent."I screamed, calling my children, but nobody answered.
I could only see cars going down, metal, concrete walls, I don't know," she said.
But her five-year-old niece Emanuele did not survive. They will not."Having destroyed Bento — and seriously damaged other towns downstream — the sludge entered the Doce River, polluting the water and killing fish and wildlife all the way to the Atlantic coast, 600 kilometres away.
Four Corners has seen evidence of a long history of problems at the BHP-owned dam, dating back to the beginning of its construction in 2007."A dam doesn't break by chance," says Carlos Eduardo Pinto, a prosecutor with the Public Ministry of Minas Gerais.
"There is repeated, continual negligence in the actions of a company owned by Vale and BHP."BHP faces a restitution bill in the billions of dollars, and the likelihood of lawsuits and litigation for years to come.
The Ngaro people lived throughout the island chain and the nearby mainland for thousands of years.
Rock art and middens at Hook Island’s Nara Inlet provide a record of their special way of life and there is an ancient Ngaro stone quarry on South Molle Island where tools were made.