Security Message for Rio de Janeiro on August 14, 2015

This message is an updated security notice to alert U.S. citizens of an unsubstantiated, non-anti-American threat that has been transmitted via social media by an alleged gang member.  The message notes that gangs may target transportation stations in the northern part of the Rio de Janeiro metropolitan area during the peak pedestrian “rush” hours today, specifically Pavuna and Central do Brasil stations.  These attacks are alleged to be a response by local gangs following the killing of a local drug gang leader by law enforcement.  Due to a possible increase in violence, we advise U.S. residents and travelers to be extra cautious in the greater Rio de Janeiro metropolitan area, particularly around major transportation stations.

Also the Consulate reminds U.S. citizens to reflect and focus on their own personal security.  Be vigilant while traveling on the roads, especially at night. Recently, there have been shootings, assaults and carjackings on the Linha Vermelha that links the airport to the Southern Zone of the city.

In Rio de Janeiro, motorists should be especially cautious at stoplights and when stuck in traffic.  Carjackings and holdups often occur at intersections, especially at night. Incidents of crime on public transportation are frequent, and at times have involved violent crimes. When traveling by yellow taxi, we recommend the use of taxis openly displaying company information and phone numbers as well as red license plates.  Consulate employees are not permitted to use public vans.

U.S. citizens who travel to or reside in Brazil are urged to enroll in the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) in order to receive the most up-to-date security information.  By enrolling, U.S. citizens make it easier for the Embassy to contact them in case of emergency.  U.S. citizens without Internet access may enroll directly with the U.S. Embassy or Consulate.

The U.S. Consulate General in Rio is located at Avenida Presidente Wilson, 147 and can be reached at phone number 21-3823-2000, emergency after-hours phone number 21-3823-2029, American Citizen Services fax number 21-3823-2093, and e-mail  Travelers may also consult the website of the U.S. Consulate in Rio de Janeiro for more information.

U.S. citizens should also consult the Department of State’s Country Specific Information for Brazil which is located on the U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Consular Affairs website.  Travelers may obtain up-to-date information on security conditions by calling 1-888-407-4747 toll-free in the United States and Canada, or on a regular toll line at 1-202-501-4444 from other countries.  Stay up to date by bookmarking our Bureau of Consular Affairs website which contains current Travel Warnings and Travel Alerts.