Death toll in Bangladesh building collapse reaches 96

More than 1,000 injured as eight-storey block outside capital of Dhaka falls

People rescue garment workers trapped under rubble at the Rana Plaza building after it collapsed, in Savar, 30 km outside Dhaka today. Photograph: Andrew Biraj/Reuters

People rescue garment workers trapped under rubble at the Rana Plaza building after it collapsed, in Savar, 30 km outside Dhaka today. Photograph: Andrew Biraj/Reuters

Fri, Apr 26, 2013, 11:11

A report has put the latest confirmed death toll from a factory building collapse in Bangladesh at 96.

An official at a control room set up to provide information said 96 people were confirmed dead and more than 1,000 injured, Reuters reported. Doctors at local hospitals said they were unable to cope with the number of victims brought in.

The eight-storey block housing garment factories and a shopping centre collapsed on the outskirts of the Bangladeshi capital of Dhaka earlier today.

Firefighters and army personnel were working at the Rana Plaza building in Savar, 30 km outside Dhaka, to rescue people who were trapped inside, Mohammad Asaduzzaman, officer in charge of the area’s police station, told Reuters.

He said factory owners appeared to have ignored a warning not to allow workers into the building after a crack was detected in the block yesterday.

“It looks like an earthquake has struck here,” said one resident as he looked at the chaotic scene of smashed concrete and ambulances making their way through e crowds of workers and wailing relatives of those still inside.

A worker at one of the factories, Sohra Begum, said: “I was at work on the third floor and then suddenly I heard a deafening sound, but couldn’t understand what was happening. I ran and was hit by something on my head.”

Bangladesh’s booming garment industry has been plagued by fires and other incidents for years, despite a drive to improve safety standards. In November last year, 112 workers were killed in a blaze at a factory in an industrial suburb of Dhaka.

Agencies