Mumbai Building Collapse Kills at Least 3, With Dozens More Trapped


NEW DELHI — A residential building in Mumbai, India’s busy financial center, collapsed on Tuesday, killing at least three people and trapping more than 40 others, officials said.

The four-story building, which was estimated to be up to 100 years old, caved in around 11:40 a.m. in Dongri, a neighborhood in south Mumbai. Residents living nearby said the collapse felt like an earthquake.

They formed a human chain to help remove bricks and slabs of concrete from the site of the building, which was on a narrow lane and closely bordered on four sides by other structures.

Indian news outlets showed footage of rescuers pulling a young child swaddled in a blanket from the debris. Mahesh Nalwade, the deputy commandant of India’s National Disaster Response Force, said at least eight people had been rescued. Dozens of officials used sniffer dogs, machinery and their bare hands to locate others.

Devendra Fadnavis, chief minister of the state of Maharashtra, which includes Mumbai, told reporters that members of 15 families were still in the rubble. The building was being redeveloped, “but the developer, it seems, did not do the work on time,” he said.

“All of this is a matter of investigation,” he said. “The whole focus now is on how to rescue the trapped people.”

Building collapses, fires, unregulated development and flooding are common in Mumbai, where some 18 million people are crowded onto a narrow piece of land jutting into the Arabian Sea.

This month, at least 32 people were killed in the city’s worst monsoon flooding in at least a decade. Schools were shut, train service was disrupted, flights were canceled and several structures were knocked over, trapping people underwater.

Source : Nytimes