A man, who was wounded during a fire at Boate Kiss nightclub, is transferred from a hospital in Santa Maria to receive treatment at Porto Alegre hospital in the southern city of Santa Maria. Photo: Reuters
A man, who was wounded during a fire at Boate Kiss nightclub, is transferred from a hospital in Santa Maria to receive treatment at Porto Alegre hospital in the southern city of Santa Maria. Photo: Reuters
Relatives of victims of the fire at Boate Kiss nightclub attend a collective wake in the southern city of Santa Maria. Photo: Reuters
Relatives of victims of the fire at Boate Kiss nightclub attend a collective wake in the southern city of Santa Maria. Photo: Reuters
Family members and friends stand around coffins containing the remains of victims after the bodies were identified at a gymnasium in Santa Maria city, Rio Grande do Sul state, Brazil. Photo: AP
Family members and friends stand around coffins containing the remains of victims after the bodies were identified at a gymnasium in Santa Maria city, Rio Grande do Sul state, Brazil. Photo: AP
Brazil's soldiers carry the remains of a victim outside a gymnasium where bodies were brought for identification in Santa Maria city, Rio Grande do Sul state, Brazil. Photo: AP
Brazil's soldiers carry the remains of a victim outside a gymnasium where bodies were brought for identification in Santa Maria city, Rio Grande do Sul state, Brazil. Photo: AP
A police officer helps a woman next to Kiss nightclub in the southern city of Santa Maria, in this picture taken by Agencia RBS. Photo: Reuters
A police officer helps a woman next to Kiss nightclub in the southern city of Santa Maria, in this picture taken by Agencia RBS. Photo: Reuters
A policeman and rescue workers help a man in front of the Kiss nightclub in the southern city of Santa Maria. Photo: Reuters
A policeman and rescue workers help a man in front of the Kiss nightclub in the southern city of Santa Maria. Photo: Reuters
Firefighters work to douse a fire at the Kiss Club in Santa Maria city, Rio Grande do Sul state, Brazil. Photo: AP
Firefighters work to douse a fire at the Kiss Club in Santa Maria city, Rio Grande do Sul state, Brazil. Photo: AP
In this photo released by Brazil's Presidency, Brazil's President Dilma Rousseff speaks about a fire that swept through a crowded nightclub killing at least 245 people i a southern Brazil,  during a press conference in Santiago, Chile. Photo: AP
In this photo released by Brazil's Presidency, Brazil's President Dilma Rousseff speaks about a fire that swept through a crowded nightclub killing at least 245 people i a southern Brazil, during a press conference in Santiago, Chile. Photo: AP
A man stands around coffins containing the remains of victims after the bodies were identified at a gymnasium in Santa Maria city, Rio Grande do Sul state, Brazil. Photo: AP
A man stands around coffins containing the remains of victims after the bodies were identified at a gymnasium in Santa Maria city, Rio Grande do Sul state, Brazil. Photo: AP
Relatives of victims of the fire at Boate Kiss nightclub attend a collective wake in the southern city of Santa Maria. Photo: Reuters
Relatives of victims of the fire at Boate Kiss nightclub attend a collective wake in the southern city of Santa Maria. Photo: Reuters
Relatives of the victims of the fire at Boate Kiss nightclub attend a collective wake, in the southern city of Santa Maria. Photo: Reuters
Relatives of the victims of the fire at Boate Kiss nightclub attend a collective wake, in the southern city of Santa Maria. Photo: Reuters
Police investigators inspect the entrance of the Kiss nightclub in Santa Maria city, Rio Grande do Sul state, Brazil. Photo: AP
Police investigators inspect the entrance of the Kiss nightclub in Santa Maria city, Rio Grande do Sul state, Brazil. Photo: AP
A banner by a company which organises graduation parties showing a student celebrating her graduation hangs beside Boate Kiss nightclub, where a fire killed at least 232 people. Photo: Reuters
A banner by a company which organises graduation parties showing a student celebrating her graduation hangs beside Boate Kiss nightclub, where a fire killed at least 232 people. Photo: Reuters
A crowd stands outside the Kiss nightclub during a fire inside the club in Santa Maria city,  Rio Grande do Sul state, Brazil. Photo: AP
A crowd stands outside the Kiss nightclub during a fire inside the club in Santa Maria city, Rio Grande do Sul state, Brazil. Photo: AP
Army soldiers carry a coffin containing the body of a victim of the fire at Boate Kiss nightclub in the southern city of Santa Maria. Photo: Reuters
Army soldiers carry a coffin containing the body of a victim of the fire at Boate Kiss nightclub in the southern city of Santa Maria. Photo: Reuters
Army soldiers carry a coffin containing the body of a victim of the fire at Boate Kiss nightclub in the southern city of Santa Maria. Photo: Reuters
Army soldiers carry a coffin containing the body of a victim of the fire at Boate Kiss nightclub in the southern city of Santa Maria. Photo: Reuters
A woman cries over the coffin of  her boyfriend at a gymnasium where bodies were brought for identification in Santa Maria city, Rio Grande do Sul state, Brazil. Photo: AP
A woman cries over the coffin of her boyfriend at a gymnasium where bodies were brought for identification in Santa Maria city, Rio Grande do Sul state, Brazil. Photo: AP
Flowers deposited by residents lie below a banner showing a student celebrating her graduation hanging on the wall of a company which organises graduation parties, beside Boate Kiss nightclub, where a fire killed at least 232 people, mostly university students, in the southern city of Santa Maria. Photo: Reuters
Flowers deposited by residents lie below a banner showing a student celebrating her graduation hanging on the wall of a company which organises graduation parties, beside Boate Kiss nightclub, where a fire killed at least 232 people, mostly university students, in the southern city of Santa Maria. Photo: Reuters
Relatives cry next to a coffin at a gymnasium where bodies were brought for identification in Santa Maria city, Rio Grande do Sul state, Brazil. Photo: AP
Relatives cry next to a coffin at a gymnasium where bodies were brought for identification in Santa Maria city, Rio Grande do Sul state, Brazil. Photo: AP
Relatives of the victims of the fire at Boate Kiss nightclub react at a collective wake, in the southern city of Santa Maria. Photo: Reuters
Relatives of the victims of the fire at Boate Kiss nightclub react at a collective wake, in the southern city of Santa Maria. Photo: Reuters
Coffins containing the bodies of victims from fire at Boate Kiss nightclub are seen inside a funeral home vehicle in the southern city of Santa Maria. Photo: Reuters
Coffins containing the bodies of victims from fire at Boate Kiss nightclub are seen inside a funeral home vehicle in the southern city of Santa Maria. Photo: Reuters
A woman, who was wounded during a fire at Boate Kiss nightclub, is transferred from a hospital in Santa Maria to receive treatment at Porto Alegre hospital in the southern city of Santa Maria. Photo: Reuters
A woman, who was wounded during a fire at Boate Kiss nightclub, is transferred from a hospital in Santa Maria to receive treatment at Porto Alegre hospital in the southern city of Santa Maria. Photo: Reuters
Family members and friends stand around coffins containing the remains of victims after the bodies were identified at a gymnasium in Santa Maria city, Rio Grande do Sul state, Brazil. Photo: AP
Family members and friends stand around coffins containing the remains of victims after the bodies were identified at a gymnasium in Santa Maria city, Rio Grande do Sul state, Brazil. Photo: AP
Relatives of the victims of the Kiss nightclub fire cry in the southern city of Santa Maria. Photo: Reuters
Relatives of the victims of the Kiss nightclub fire cry in the southern city of Santa Maria. Photo: Reuters

A blaze raced through a crowded nightclub in Brazil, killing hundreds as panicked party-goers stampeded toward the exits.

It appeared to be the world's deadliest nightclub fire in more than a decade.

Witnesses said that a flare or firework lit by band members may have started the fire.