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Power outage briefly darkens Rio de Janeiro neighbourhood popular with World Cup visitors

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RIO DE JANEIRO - Power failed for about three hours Sunday in a densely populated area in the southern part of Rio de Janeiro that is popular with tourists visiting for the World Cup.

Buildings throughout the well-to-do Botafogo district lost electricity, said Raphael Torres, a spokesman for the power company, Light SA. He said he didn't know how many people were affected or the cause of the failure.

The outage didn't hit the Copacabana neighbourhood, where most World Cup tourists are staying, or the beach where the FIFA Fan Fest watch area gathers thousands of people to take in the tournament's matches on a TV giant screen.

Daniel Duarte was at home watching the match between Algeria and South Korea when the lights went out.

He said he was surprised the power failed on a holiday weekend, with many Rio residents out of town and temperatures well below the normally scorching levels that have provoked past outages.

"As long as the beer is cold we'll be ok," he said while drinking at a neighbourhood bar lit only by candles and brimming with locals having a laugh and offering up insults at the government for the outage.

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