Dhaka, Apr 24 (): An eight-storey building in Bangladesh that lodged many garment factories collapsed on Wednesday morning, killing more than 70 people, injuring hundreds, and leaving uncountable number of people trapped in the debris, said the Bangladeshi officials and media outlets.
The commercial building that collapsed today morning is situated at the Rana Plaza building in Savar. Apart from housing many garment factories, the building also had a bank and other shops.
One of the chief officers of Savar Model Police Station, OC Asaduzzaman said that the back portion of the building started to collapse suddenly around 8:30am. Just in a short period of time, the whole structure, except the main pillar and parts of the front wall, caved in causing an all-round panic.
He further added that the factory owners seemed to have neglected a warning not to permit their workers into the building after a crack was noticed in the block on Tuesday.
Efforts are under way to rescue those trapped beneath the debris. The army is helping with the rescue operation in the Savar area. Brig. Gen. Mohammed Siddiqul Alam Shikder said more than 600 survivors had been rescued and have been rushed to hospitals, officials said.
With many people assumed to be trapped under the debris, rescuers feared the death toll may rise significantly. It was very difficult to find the survivors in the heap of concrete and mangled steel which resembled the aftermath of an earthquake.
Locals said around 6,000 workers used to work in the four factories located in the building.
The health secretary of Bangaladesh, M.M. Niazuddin said that at least 76 people were confirmed dead. Another official said hundreds were being treated for injuries.
Building collapse is very common in the crowded city of Dhaka as the buildings are sometimes erected without approval and many do not confirm to construction regulations. Eight years ago, dozens died when a garment factory collapsed in the same area.