While trapped in the fire at the Brazil nightclub Kiss, which claimed the lives of over 200 people, student Michele Cardoso requested help on Facebook.
‘Incendio na KISS Socorro,” (Translation: "Fire at KISS help.") was her final Facebook status. Cardoso wrote it using her mobile phone while trapped in the fire, reports the Daily Mail. The status was posted 50 minutes after it was first reported that there was a fire at the club in southern Brazil.
The deadly fire is one of the world’s deadliest nightclub fires in over a decade.
“There was so much smoke and fire, it was complete panic and it took a long time for people to get out, there were so many dead,” survivor Luana Silva told the Globo TV Network.
A band's vocalist, Marcelo Santos, who was performing at Kiss during an event for a local university, may have caused the fire by lighting a flare or firework. According to the Associated Press, most of the attendees were students at the Federal University of Santa Maria.
“Large amounts of toxic smoke quickly filled the room and I would say that at least 90 percent of victims died of asphyxiation,” Paulo Alfonso Beltrame, a professor at the medical school, told the AP.
“The toxic smoke made people lose their sense of direction so they were unable to find their way to the exit. Apparently they confused the bathroom door with the exit door.”
Santos was later detained, as was Mauro Hoffman, the co-owner of the club, the Daily Mail reports.
The 20-year-old student, Cardoso, was with at Kiss along with her sister Clarissa and boyfriend Joao Paulo. All three succumbed to the fire.
When friends saw her facebook status asking for help, they responded and asked if she was alright, but it was too late.
“I never imagined that it was serious when I first saw her asking for help on Facebook in the early hours, until I woke up with a message from my mum telling me what had happened,” a friend posted on her page after it was confirmed that Cardoso was one of the 234 victims.
Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff responded to the tragedy saying, “We are together necessarily. We are going to make it through this tragedy.