53 dead from building collapse in China, search for trapped limbs

BEIJING – A building collapse a week ago in central China killed 53 people, state media reported on Friday as a search for the wreckage was completed after rescuers found 10 survivors.

Authorities said in a press conference that all the missing had been recorded by 3 a.m., state-run CCTV said in a statement.

The residential and commercial building in Changsha City suddenly collapsed on the afternoon of April 29th. The aerial photographs showed it as frying on the second floor, among other buildings about six stories high. At least nine people were arrested on suspicion of ignoring building codes or committing other offenses.

The survivors were pulled from the rubble for several days. The 10th and last one was withdrawn shortly after midnight on Thursday, 5 ½ days after the collapse. According to information, all the survivors were in good condition after being hospitalized.

Among those arrested are the owner of the building, three people in charge of design and construction, and five others who allegedly made a false security assessment for a hostel on the fourth to sixth floors of the building. The building also had residences, a cafe and a restaurant.

Rescuers are removing the 10th survivor who was pulled alive after being trapped for 132 hours by the wreckage of a privately owned housing structure that collapsed in Changsha.
Rescuers are removing the 10th survivor who was pulled alive after being trapped for 132 hours by the wreckage of a privately owned housing structure that collapsed in Changsha.
AP
A rescuer is working with a rescue dog at the site of the collapse of a makeshift apartment building in Changsha.
A rescuer is working with a rescue dog at the site of the collapse of a makeshift apartment building in Changsha.
AP

Rescuers used search dogs, hand tools, drones and electronic life detectors.

In a report of the rescue of the eighth survivor on Monday, state media reported that rescuers were faced with an unstable pile of rubble that they had to work around instead of demolishing. Prior to the rescue, they were able to feed on video equipment to contact the girl and find that one of her legs was trapped. She was also fed saline to drink.

The increase in the number of self-constructed buildings collapsing in recent years has prompted Chinese President Xi Jinping to call for additional checks to reveal structural weaknesses.

Poor compliance with safety standards, including the illegal addition of extra floors and the inability to use reinforcing iron bars, is often blamed for such disasters. Decomposing infrastructure, such as gas pipes, has also led to explosions and collapses.

Doctors remove the 10th survivor who was pulled from the collapsed building in Changsha.
Doctors remove the 10th survivor who was pulled from the collapsed building in Changsha.
AP

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