Brazil's President Medici is scheduled to open the first section of the trans-Amazon highway in September - a nine-thousand mile, 500-million dollar highway network which will provide the first land link between the Atlantic and the Peruvian border.
AERIAL VIEWS..jungle & road through (2 shots)
SVs & MVs bulldozer knocks down trees (6 shots)
AERIAL VIEWS..Highway through jungle (2 shots)
GV TRACKING SHOT..along new road (2 shots)
AERIAL VIEW..road through jungle
GV & TV Bulldozers shifting dirt (3 shots)
GV & TRAVEL SHOT..through jungle
GV TRAVEL SHOT..along track
CU Driver pulls whistle and travel shots as animal runs over track (4 shots)
GV & TRAVEL SHOT..train over bridge (2 shots)
SV & CU Fireman feeds engine with logs (3 shots)
TRAVEL SHOT..showing new road along highway
GVs Surveyors in thick jungle (2 shots)
GVs bridge under construction (2 shots)
GV PAN..& MV..farm with animals (2 shots)
GV Bulldozers working (6 shots)
Initials ES. 1600 ES. 1640
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Background: Brazil's President Medici is scheduled to open the first section of the trans-Amazon highway in September - a nine-thousand mile, 500-million dollar highway network which will provide the first land link between the Atlantic and the Peruvian border.
In Brazil the highway construction is regarded as the "work of the century" - a task which is aimed at overcoming the country's last natural frontier - the Amazon rainforest. The challenge is born of the necessity of easing the poverty and political unrest in the north-east.
Although Brazil's roadbuilders gained invaluable experience while constructing the 1350-mile (2,160 kilometres) Belem-Brasilia highway ten years ago, the road through the Amazon rainforests originally seemed an impossible undertaking. But in a little more than a year of back-breaking work, they have managed to carve out the red-mud road through nearly fifteen-hundred miles of jungle.
The men work in merciless conditions. Often before any clearing work is done, visibility is restricted to about twenty yards in the dense rainforest. Leeches drop from trees, and at night mosquitoes take over. In heavy rain, which falls frequently, the bulldozers and heavy trucks get stuck in the mud and clothes become so mildewed, they fall apart. In fact, nobody is able to work.
But the job is worth it. The Amazon basin measures about 2.7-million square miles and its mineral wealth is enormous - an estimated 800-million tons of iron ore, besides huge deposits of manganese, uranium, copper, oil, tin, lead, gold and diamonds.
When the trans-Amazon is completed, it will provide, apart from the east-west link across the country, access to the Bolivian and Peruvian borders. Other roads will reach out to French Guiana, Colombia and Venezuela.