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No Time to Hesitate: Brazilian Teacher Hailed a Hero after Saving 58 Students

Credit: REUTERS/RICARDO MORAES

Eliene Almeida didn’t think twice when her husband rushed into her classroom to tell her to run.

Screen Shot 2015-11-16 at 1.52.18 PM
Credit: Ricardo Moraes / Reuters

Almeida was teaching in her village of Bento Rodrigues, Brazil when a dam burst and created a 65-foot wall of mud, giving them only a few minutes to escape. Almeida rushed 58 students out the door to safety within three minutes, saving their lives.

“He came in shouting that we had to run,” Almeida told Reuters. “Within three minutes everyone was out.”

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Villagers had only 25 minutes to escape. The mudslide destroyed six villages, killed two and many more are still missing.

Get more details on how the mudslide started here.

Watch aerial footage of the disaster below:

Brazilian teacher saves 58 students after nearby dam burstBrazilian teacher saves 58 students after nearby dam burst

Posted by RYOT on Monday, November 9, 2015

Credit: RYOT / Facebook

READ: How 15 has Become a Symbol of Death for Women in Brazil

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Why Mexico is Playing Such an Important Role for Cubans

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Why Mexico is Playing Such an Important Role for Cubans

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CREDIT: MARTHA PSKOWSKI / VICE

Now, more than ever, Cubans are fleeing Cuba. But not everyone is opting for the old raft-to-Florida plan. You see, now, thanks to improved relations, if a Cuban person reaches U.S. soil, no matter the point or means of entry, they’re allowed to stay and become legal residents after a year.

This means Cubans are taking advantage of the “safe passage” visas handed out in Mexico. Seven out of ten Cubans now make make the trek to arrive in Mexico, collect their visas and head straight to U.S. borders.

READ: Cuban Embassy Reopens. Cigars, Protests and Food Ensue

It doesn’t mean things are easy.  Rolando Yanes Fabrega, who escaped to Quito, Ecuador from Cuba — Ecuador stopped requiring visas in 2008 — still has to travel through Colombia, Panama, Costa Rica, Nicaragua, Honduras and Guatemala to make it to Mexico. To complicate matters, the U.S. — afraid of the influx of immigration — is supposedly pressuring Mexico to deport any Cuban trying to reach the states.

But these obstacles are not stopping Cubans. “Everyone who is able to leave Cuba is leaving,” Alexy Ribero Martínez told Vice News. “Those who can’t leave now will be stuck there.”

Read more stories of Cubans’ traveling through Latin America to the U.S. here.

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